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Full text of "Creative Computing Magazine (October 1984) Volume 10 Number 10"

creative 
GorapatiRg 

the #/ magazine of computer applications and software 



October 1984 
Jbl.10No.IO 
$2.95 



*&&> 



® 



In-Depfh Evaluations: 

■ Epson PX-8 Notebook 
Computer 

■ Apple Ik 

■ Acorn Computer 

■ Havoc Computer 

■ IBM Keyboards 

■ Software for 
Preschoolers 

■ 25 /Mafh Education 
Packages 

■ Human Edge Software 

Special Section: 
Choosing And Using 
Integrated Software 

Computers In 
Special Education 



Software Designers 
Speak Out 



Structured Programming 
In Basic 



NO«OT I 

S883d SIH 86009908 M3S 9T 
3Z£ l.loia-£*******t********** 



\*Ud.V i<«u<»<."- 



.11 




Banner 

Allows you to print in a variety of type 
sizes. Even large banners! 



Rolodex t 
Finds the name and number 
you need instantly without 
changing programs. 




should do all of the above. 



Free Software "... a chest ofJewels."-PC Week 
Great hardware deserves great software. So, if 
you buy a Tecmar board we'll give you our 
Treasure Chest™ of Software at no extra charge. 
The Treasure Chest consists of 24 
programs that include business 
applications, a calculator, a 
security system, hardware diag 
nostics, even games! Most of 
these can be run in background 
mode with programs like Lotus 
1-2-3 and WordStar. Using these 




Tecmar 

THE POWER BEHIND THE PC 

CIRCLE 205 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



features is as easy as a couple of keystrokes, 
and without changing disks. No other company 
offers you such an extensive array of software 
with their multifunction boards. 

So, ask your dealer for a demonstration 
of any of Tecmar's multifunction 
boards. And check out the free 
software while you're there. Or 
call 216-349-0600 for the dealer 
nearest you. 



Lotus 1 2 3 is a registered trademark ot the Lotus Development Corporation 
tRolodei is a registered trademark ot the Rolodei Corporation ttWordStar 
is a registered trademark of the MicroPro International Corporation 



fc_ 



V 




TECMAR 



Clock/Calendar 

Automatically inserts the date and time 
when you turn on your computer. 



Encode/Decode 

Ensures the security of your files. 




Calculator 

Does your figuring in 

background mode so you 

won't have to change 

programs. 




Personalized form letters 
Uses your file to personalize , 
your letters and make labels, I 



Memo 
Writes 
memos and 
keeps a 
written 
record of 
each one. 



Appointment 
Reminder 
Lets you know where 
to be and when. 



Tfecmar thinks your PC 



As your business grows, so should your 
computer. Only Tecmar offers you this unique 
package of hardware and free software. With it 
your PC can grow to its full potential. 

Tecmar Multifunction Boards . . . 

"extremely powerful"- PC World 
A Tecmar board will expand your computer's 
memory and increase its speed and efficiency. 
It will give you additional ports to accommodate 
a wide range of peripherals from modems and 
plotters to dot matrix and letter quality printers. 



With a Tecmar board you can run powerful pro- 
grams like Lotus 1-2-3™ • and WordStar" n on a 
PCjr. The RamSpooler makes printing a back- 
ground task and frees your PC for other jobs. 
A built-in clock calendar automatically inserts 
the date and time at power on and is indepen- 
dently powered by an easily replaced battery. 

Every Tecmar multifunction board is run 
through a series of rigorous tests to ensure quality. 
Our incredibly low failure rate (0.4%) is un- 
paralleled. All boards are additionally backed 
by a full one -year warranty. 



Our Captain ™ or other multifunction boards can add up to 
384K bytes of memory to your IBM PC. They'll give you 
additional serial and parallel ports as well as a built-in 

clock/calendar. With each board, you'll get our 
Treasure Chest"" of Software (24 programs in all) 
at no extra cost 



For your graphics needs, 

Tecmar offers the Graphics 

Master™ With it, your PC gets 

graphics support for most 

popular software packages 

like Lotus 1-2-3,™ Open 

Access,'" Auto 

CAD,™ and all 

IBM color 

software. 

Graphics 

Master works 

in high 

resolution color 

(640 x 400) or 

Monochrome 

(720 x 700). 





Peripheral 

Vision 

When your computer needs 
peripherals, it pays to go with the 
company that has the peripherals 
and the vision. Tecmar. 

In all, Tecmar has more than 
150 peripherals and add-ons for 
your computer. So, when you're 
ready to expand, ask for Tecmar. 
Or write for our brochure. 

Tecmar, Inc., 6225 Cochran 
Road, Solon, OH 44139 USA, 
Tel. (216) 349-0600, Telex 466692. 

Tecmar International, Inc., Avenue 
de la Tanche, 2, B1160 Brussels, 
Belgium, Tel. (02) 660-44-51, 
Telex 25387. 

Tecmar 

THE POWER BEHIND THE PC 



large memory storage, Tecmar 
your PC a variety of 
Disk Drives with capacities 
to 74 megabytes. These 
include Removable 
Disk Drives for un- 
limited hard disk 
storage. 



Tecmar's Lab Master™ is ideal for 

process control and the tracking of 

laboratory experiments in industrial 

and scientific applications. It converts 

analog data to digital data, and back 

again. Sophisticated timing is 
accomplished throughout this process 
by Lab Master's timer/counter circuitry 

(AMD 9513). The Lab Master has 

24 digital I/O lines. 12-bit resolution 

is standard while 14- or 16-bit resolution 

is optional. Additional A/D and D/A 

channels are also available. 



And Tecmar also 
makes the MacDrive ,™ 
Removable or Fixed 
Hard Disk Drive for 



the Macintosh. 




in ^- 




Something Totally New in Applications Sol 

The Folks Who Make Turbo Pascal.® 



7^™tTT7/ 




ALWAYS 

JUST A KEYSTROKE AWAY 






SOMETHING TO RELIEVE 
THIS MESS!" 

I yourself searching 
for a calculator or a notepad when 
you've got a computer right in front ol 
you. then you know wtiy we came up 
with Sidekick*. 



WHETHER YOU'RE RUNNING 
1-2-3, WORDSTAR, 
dRASEII OR WHATEVER . . . 

JUST A KEYSTROKE 
AND A SIDEKICK 
WINDOW OPENS . . . 

• A CALCULATOR 

• A NOTEPAD 

• AN APPOINTMENT 
CALENDAR 

• AN AUTO DIALER 

• AN ASCII TABLE 

• AND MUCH MORE 

ALL AT ONCE ... OR ONE AT 
A TIME. ANYWHERE ON 
THE SCREEN YOU LIKE. 

ANOTHER KEYSTROKE, 

AND YOU'RE RIGHT 

WHERE YOU LEFT OFF 

IN YOUR ORIGINAL 

PROGRAM! 

(you never really left!) 



4 




I I II I I I I I I I I I • • I l» It v»- \ 



SIDEKICK 

ICTRODUCTOKV OFFER 

$49.95 

Amiable inilv l.» the IBM ft \l n injl.mpjlihto 



Something brand new. Crafted in Assembly 
language as carefully as Borland's famous Turbo 
Pascal c . so that It's lightning fast and as compact as 
only Borland knows how to make it! Willi .i notepad 
that has a full -screen editor that saves your notes to disk 
You can even swap information hack and forth between 
your applications software and >our Sidekick 16 . 

Suppose you're working with a spreadsheet, and you 
suddenly have an important idea Jus! hit the button, a 
window opens, you wnte (he note and hit the button 
again You re right back where you left off in the 
spreadsheet 



Seed to make a phone call? Whether the number is in 
an existing database, your own Sidekick phone directory, 
or you've |ust typed u on the screen put the cursor 
next to the number, hit the keystroke, and Sidekick dials 
fur you!" 

There's lots more loo You can move Ihe Sidekick 
windows anywhere on the screen \ou like And you can 
hi al a time as you need 

\Xe designed il because we needed it If \ou vi 
been writing a report and needed to do a quick calcu- 
lation, or |ot down a note, then you understand why 
"Onh uith Hayes Smartmndrm and compatibles 



YOU CAN ORDER YOUR COPY OF SIDEKICK TODAY! 

For Visa and MasterCard orders call Toll Free 1-800-255-8008 in California 1 8O0-742-1133 

( lines open 24 hours. 7 clays a week ) Dealer ami Distributor Inquiries Welcome 408-438-8400 



"- SIDEKICK 1 $49.95 

( plus IS (Mi shipping and handling 
• shipped I HS I 

(he, Money Order 
VIS I Mastt-rt ai 

< ard - 

IjsfYiralion Date 



Please he sure your computer is an IBM It XT, |r or /me compatible ' 

NAME 

ADDRESS 



CITY STATS /IP 

ITIIPHOM 



mi residents add 6% Mies tan Outside USA add Sis 00 (II outside ol 
USA payme- ■■* drall payable mtlse US and in u S dollars I Sorry. 

SF24 



B 



» BORIADD 

INTERNATIONAL 



Borland International 
411 3 Scorts Valley Drive 
Scotts Valley. California 95066 
TELEX 172373 



CIRCLE 105 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



REACH FOR A 
TEACHER 

TEACH YOURSELF. TRAIN OTHERS. BY LISTENING TO FLIPTRACK 

COURSES ON CASSETTE. No more digging through manuals. Or fighting class schedules 

Just pop a FlipTrack teacher into any standard cassette player. Sit down at your computer. 

And start learning. At your pace. At your convenience. There's no clearer, quicker or 

easier way to master your computer and its software. In hours, not weeks. 

THE FLIPTRACK ADVANTAGE. A FlipTrack teacher lets you learn hands-on. 

Nothing is simulated. The patented FlipTrack format lets you choose just the 

topics that interest you. At a flip of the tape. And a fully indexed Guide 

puts it all down in black and white. For instant recall. Anytime. i 

Select from these tested "how to" courses for 

PROFESSIONAL COMPUTERS 

APPLE II* (PRO DOS VERSION) $39.95 

2 CMHItH 4 Guid* .HFAH041 
APPLE II* (DOS 3.3 VERSION) $57.00 

3 CMMttM t Guid*. .HH01I «_» — -^aMBI 

APPLEIIPLUS $57.00 U^^^^^^^^WU HOTlT fR^T 

3 CHUM 1 Guife . »H»0I1 ■T'fll ' Vl*PJ I w <CSV|lf 1W\ 

APPLE III (6 III PLUS) $110.00 -_■ PJaKMJaPaJBHapj OPPtTaxmV 

IBM PERSONAL COMPUTER ... $57.00 P* K' A . Wt I'.Pl Vft»2^«l 

IBMPCJR $39.95 Jj P. ' .M fl I OOtUtrHJs. 

2 CmM 4 GuM*. .HFAF040 ■ . I I ' XJmmPmPJ ■P^»VS*V(*a*>«J>vV*^BHkSE9r4Q J*lli|l^^. 

wmxt $75.oo K m I II ■"f'lVliI;*/ !:■ Il!miSy , *BB 

4 CMMM 4 Qui*. .HR027 H'JRJ.VPm 1 D 1 1.V '. ? 'J* J T ■ w *lJlKP flv*. .** 
FRANKLIN ACE 1000 $57 00 PjXmmmmmPPBI ■T'tTrTTT'iT^STB PS mm^T^^** UP/lUT 

3 Chum 4 Guld*. »HS02« __^M*aaafl ■L^*'''"___ a ___B a af«l^BJ ■^■■^^^ *** 
CP M (FOR ANY COMPUTER) $60.00 

3 CMMttM 4 Quid*. #38013 

CP M-86 (FOR ANY COMPUTER) $7S.00 

3 CMMttM 4 Guld., .SN024 

WORD PROCESSING 

APPLE WRITER $57 00 

3 cmmhm 4 gum. >swo2t H . I ' JLLmPyThI ^MMMmmmmmmml LT'w j*f\ 

EASYWRITERII $5700 f_ L H I l »VJm. H • l% l 'TT*^ ¥»*««-* W 

3 CMMttM * GuMJ., .SPOTS ■TV) M < " lUbmI P t I ■ 1 . ■> K f ■ 

MULTIMATE 55700 Bl ) i* T I "1 MPS* H V^J*_PH k ^ B Bl I > 1 U .V; 

3 CMMttM 4 Gu.O., .SFAM044 ■mmm^mVI ' I ."■ Pi ■ 1 ' I II ' I lilt I Pi J «Cl iW^ 

WORDSTAR ..$5700 Ml >LL1«*R9tJ ■» ' J ■* -^ ' " t * f J I **UT¥»«i 

3 CMMttM 4 Gutd.. .SC014 PV*HC%S| I f '■ PF^"*T""B?y^ , *rTpM l F% * U 52 
WORDSTAR « MAILMERGE $75.00 ■_ B T^J fl ■'-LUmVJ PV U I I >B I 1 1 . i Pj J »f*3 TLV 

4 CMMttM 4 GuKW. *SW19 ■f' * ^M***f?M ■**T>^^^^V*4 ^8*^ 

SPREADSHEETS » f V ^ j^'rV ^ L ^l 

MULTIPLAN $75.00 pTJ^lT7 I ij I k JTTTpI 

4 CMMttM 4 Guid* >S41023 ■\_l_ M ( M LT_ M a ' OUrr. ..,, 

SUPERCALC $75 00 P}-«^ "nary 

4 CMMttM 4 GuM*. .SL022 

VISICALC $75.00 

4 CMMttM 4 Guid*. .SE016 

INTEORATED SOFTWARE J^ 

FRAMEWORK $75 00 

4 CMMttM 4 Guid*. .SMT047 
LOTUS 1-2-3 $75 00 

4 CMMttM 4 Guid*. .ST029 

HOME COMPUTERS 

COLECOADAM $299$ l^»S/^itf!^&^pfl DmJRPmPJRi > 

2 CMMttM 4 GuMto. .3713115 ...«*».»» ^irl«0?%-J*0™™ "' L 

ATARI 600XL 800XL $19 95 PJS<C>>C V2L_ 

1 CMMIM. IMlT W l Guid*. .3713113 P— ^ VVn A M^ , • . . ^^■_*mB*mBTmmPMM& B 

COMMODORE 64 S2 9 95 PJI&MPjl pF^ /53&b 

2 CMMttM 1 DM Tap* 4 Gu.d. .3713110 P^ i rr 4Y 
COMMODORE VIC-20 $19 95 ^^ 

1 CMMtt*. 1 0*1* Tap* 4 Guid*. .3713111 P^^ _4^ 

TEXAS INSTRUMENTS 99 4A $1595 -}5» A 

1 Vote DM. Tap. 4 GuM*. .37131-12 «*.*«. 

MONEYBACK GUARANTEE. Order with 

confidence on a 1 5-day right of return basis. 

Prompt refund if not delighted. To order, send 

check that includes $2.50 per course for 

shipping and handling. Or Visa and MasterCard _». _. -® . 

holders may order TOLL FREE FlipTraCK Leam/tig SyStOtnS 

800-222-FLIP (In Illinois, call 312-790-1117.) ggg Main , Glen ENya , L 6o 137 

:iHCLE 142 ON READER SERVICE CARD 





In This Issue 



Evaluations & Profiles 

1 O Epson PX-8 Ahl 

A notebook computer with many novel features 

OH A New Keyboard For The IBM PC Lockwood 

Which one is right for you? 

3Q Apple He Revealed Linzmayer 

Apple flexibility in a portable package 

40 Acorn Anderson 

A tall oak in education 

4fi Havac Computer Linzmayer 

An Apple work alike at a modest price 

CO Preschoolers Learn At Home Smith 

Five packages for younger family members 

A9 Sesame Street Moots Silicon Alley Linzmayer 

CCW educational games for the Color Computer 

gg Growing Up Literate Staples 

w Learn to read and write by computer 

76 Software For Learning Mathematics Ahl 

We look at 25 programs 

Q2 Expert Systems Ahl 

Innovative products from Human Edge Software 



Articles 

96 Computers In Special Education Kleiman & Humphrey 
9V Can kids with learning problems benefit from computers? 

1 02 ' s There A Wufflegump In Your House? Van Tyle 

1 Creative talks to top educational software designers 

1 06 What's New In Hardware Lockwood 

1 vw A computer from ITT; an upgrade from IBM 

110 What's New In Software Lockwood 



Choosing and Using an 
Integrated Software Package 

This month s special section by George Blank 
S2 How to Buy an Integrated Software Package 
S4 Integrated Packages: A Closer Look 
S9 Previews of Coming Attractions 

S 1 Directory of Integrated Software Packages 

S1 5 Manufacturer Listing 




Applications & Software 



Luehrmann 



131 Structured Programming In Basic . 

Control Structures in ANSI Basic 



1 41 A Calculus Game Wigley 

Even this nemesis can be fun 



Departments 



6 Input/Output Readers 

8 Notices Fee 



. . Muller 
. Murphy 



147 LogoType 

Turtle Target Practice 

1 gO Telecommunications Talk 

A new face for Western Union 



1 58 Print About Printers Anderson 

1 **** DataSouth 220, TTXpress. and ESI smart spooler 

1 65 TRS-80 Strings Gray 

' ww Tired switches, biofeedback, and color photos 



Ahl 
Anderson & Linzmayer 

Anderson 



1 76 Notebook Computing 

News from Teleram. Sharp, Gavilan, and PCSG 



178 Apple Cart 

The lie sees and speaks 



1 82 Commodores Port 

Sight and sound from Simon's Basic 

•| j»y Outpost: Atari Anderson 



Can Tramiel save Atari? 



191 IBM I 

■ w ■ MegaBasic: Rolls Royce or Subaru? 



Glinert-Cole 



Cover: Photograph by Dennis Bettencourt 



.1 
10. 



10 



a v bpa 



Creative Computing (ISSN 097-8140) is published monthly at 3460 Wilshire 

Blvd.. Los Angeles. CA 90010 by Ahl Computing. Inc., a subsidiary of Zift-Davis 

Publishing Company David Ahl. President. Elizabeth B Staples. Vice President. 

Selwyn Taubman. Treasurer. Bertram A Abrams. Secretary PO Box 789-M 

Morristown. N.J. 07960 Second Class Postage paid at Los Angeles. CA 90052 

and additional mailing offices 

Copynght©1984 by Ahl Computing. Inc All rights reserved 

Editorial offices located at 39 East Hanover Ave . Morris Plains. NJ 07950 Phone 

(2011540-0445 

Domestic Subscriptions 12 issues $24 97; 24 issues $43 97. 36 issues S57 97 

POSTMASTER send address changes to Creative Computing. PO Box 5214. 

Boulder. CO 80321 Call 800-631-8112 toll-free (in New Jersey call 201-540- 

04451 to order a subscription 



October 1 984 » Creative Computing 







Staff 




Founder/Editor-in-Chief 


David H. Ahl 


Editor 


Elizabeth B. Staples 


Managing Editor 


Peter Fee 


Associate Editor 


John Anderson 


Assistant Editors 


Owen Linzmayer 




Run Lockwood 


Reviews Editor 


Paul Grosjean 


Editor-at-Large 


Ken Uston 


Contributing Editors 


Will Fastie 




Susan Glinert-Cole 




Danny Goodman 


/J*^\ 


Stephen B. Gray 


f {2 -^r*lfciJ 


Glen Hart 




Stephen Kimmel 


n^fei^ri^ 


Art Leyenberger 


Brian Murphy 




Ted Nelson 


£■ — ^aj ^i 


Peter Payack 


khr=*] \\| 


Alvin Toftler 



Copy Editor 
Editorial Assistant 
Secretary 



Sherrie Van Tyle 
Laura Gibbons 
Diane Koncur 



Auditor 



Jennifer Shaler 



Design Director 
Art Director 
Assistant Art Director 
Artists 

Typesetting 



Brian Dessin Day 

Patrick Calkins 

Chris DeMilia 

Eugene Bicknell 
Peter Kelley 

Karen K. Brown 



Creative Computing Press 
Administrative Assistant 
Retail Marketing 
Operations Manager 
Fulfillment 



Laura Conboy 

Joanne Sapio 

Susan DeMark 

Dan Nunziato 

Francis Miskovich 

Rosemary Bender 

Linda Blank 

Pat Champion 

Elsie Graff 

Carol Vita 

Jim Zecchin 

Barbara Carnegie 

Lisa Dickisson 

Donna Stiefel 

Cheryl Schauble 

Valerie Gaddis 

Mauricio Algarra 

John Ziegenfuss 



Shipping a Receiving 



Ronald Antonaccio 

Richard Crawford 

Andy Dayan 

David Lewis 

William Sprouls 



Advertising Sales 

Publisher 

Claude P. Sheer 

Creative Computing 

Ziff-Davis Publishing Company 

One Park Ave. 

New York. NY 10016 

(212)503-5011 



Advertising Coordinator 
Chris Tice 
Creative Computing 
Ziff-Davis Publishing Company 
One Park Ave. 
New York. NY 10016 
(212)503-5012 

Northern California, Northwest 

Jeff Miller 

Ziff-Davis Publishing Company 

1 1 Davis Drive 

Belmont. CA 94002 

(415)594-2290 

Southern California, Southwest 

Tom Martin 

Susan Curtis Scott 

Ziff-Davis Publishing Company 

3460 Wilshire Blvd 

Los Angeles. CA 90010 

(213)387-2100 

New England 
Merrie Lynch 
Nancy Wood 
CEL Associates. Inc. 
61 Adams Street 
Braintree, MA 02184 
(617)848-9306 

Midwest 

Jeff Edman 
William Biff Fairclough 
The Partis Group 
4761 W TouhyAve 
Lincolnwood. IL 60646 
(312)679-1100 

Mid-Atlantic, Southeast 

Larry Levine 

Ziff-Davis Publishing Company 

One Park Ave 

New York. NY 10016 

(212)503-5013 

(201)972-9466 

Canada 

The Pattis Group 

501 Eglinton Ave. E. 

Suite 202 

Toronto. Ontario M4P 1N4 

(416)482-6288 



aw ox it 




Consumer Computers a Eloclronrcs Magazine Division 


Vice President/General Manager 


Eileen G Markowitz 


Vice President Licensing and 




Special Projects: 


Jerry Schneider 


Vice President Creative Services: 


Herbert Stern 


Vice President Circulation: 


Carole Mandel 


Creative Director: 


Peter J Blank 


Marketing Manager: 


Room Sonnenberg 



Permissions 

Material in this publication may not be 
reproduced in any form without permission. 
Requests for permission should be directed 
to Jean Lamensdorf . Ziff-Davis Publishing 
Company, One Park Avenue. New York, 
New York 10016. 



Where To Send It 

All editorial material, including article 
submissions, press releases, and products 
for evaluation should be sent to: 

Creative Computing 

39 E. Hanover Ave. 

Morris Plains. NJ 07950 
Correspondence regarding other Creative 
Computing products and publications 
should also be sent to the Morris Plains 
address. 

Correspondence related to advertising, 
including ad copy, questions on billing, and 
requests for rates, should be sent to: 

Advertising Department 

Creative Computing 

Ziff-Davis Publishing Co. 

One Park Ave. 

New York. NY 10018 
Correspondence regarding subscriptions, 
including orders, changes of address, and 
problems should be sent to: 

Creative Computing 

P.O. Box5214 

Boulder. CO 80321 
Your help in choosing the correct address 
for your correspondence is appreciated. 
An incorrectly addressed letter or package 
can take as long as several weeks to reach 
its proper destination. 



Subscriptions 

All subscriptions orders and other corre- 
spondence related to subscriptions 
should be addressed to: 

Creative Computing 

P.O. Box 5214 

Boulder. Colorado 80321. 
Foreign subscriptions must be accom- 
panied by payment in U.S. currency. 
Subscription prices: 
U.S. Canada Foreign 

1 year $24 97 1 year 2997 1 year 34 97 

2 years 43.97 2 years 53 97 2 years 63 97 

3 years 57.97 3 years 72 97 3 years 87.97 

Airmail delivery on foreign subscriptions 
is available for a one-year period only at 
$75.00 additional for mail to Asia and 
Australia, and $50.00 additional for all 
other foreign. 

Subscribers in the United Kingdom 
may send payment in sterling to: 

Hazel Gordon 

10 Bishops Way 

Sutton Coldfield 

West Midlands B74 4XU 

Please allow at least eight weeks for 
change of address. Include old address 
as well as new— enclosing if possible an 
address label from a recent issue. 



Attention Authors 

Creative Computing will not be responsible 
for the return of unsolicited manuscripts, cas- 
settes, floppy disks, program listings, etc. not 
submitted with a self-addressed, stamped 
envelope 



October 1 984 c Creative Computing 










New Qantex 7065. 
A fast printer at a slow price. 



No matter how heavy the traffic our 
new Qantex 7065 multimode printer 
will keep your documents flowing 
smoothly At a very affordable price. 

Use it for data processing and 
the 7065 zips along at 300 cps bidirec- 
tionally. Both user-defined formats 
and six-part forms capability are 
standard 

Switch to word processing and 
the 7065 delivers near letter quality at 
125 cps Plus features such as propor- 
tional spacing justification, auto-un- 
deriine and bold 

And as a 65 cps letter quality 



printer, it's fast enough and quiet 
enough to leave the competition in 
the dust. You get high density, double 
pass printing in your choice of some 
20 fonts 

The 7065 is also a dot addressa- 
ble graphics printer with resolution to 
144 x 144 dots per inch and a full com- 
plement of line drawing graphics 

Besides being very fast, the 7065 is 
very compatible — with IBM, Apple, 
Lotus 1-2-3 and just about any other 
personal computer or software on the 
market. It offers built-in bar code ca- 
pability. And its 500-million-plus char- 



acter print head and industrial quality 
construction are designed for long 
hard use. 

To find out how quickly the 
Qantex 7065 could bring your infor- 
mation processing up to speed con- 
tact Qantex for details or a demo. 
Qantex, 60 Plant Avenue, Hauppauge, 
NY 11788. Call toll-free 800-645-5292; in 
New York State 516-582-6060. 

5) north ntliintic 

Qantex 

CIRCLE 178 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




Sell Shocked 

Dear Editor: 

I have a few things to point out in reference to your "Under- 
cover Consumer" article (June 1984). 

I am a systems consultant for the largest computer store chain 
in the St. Louis metropolitan area. We know the machines we 
sell inside and out. But we are not required to learn what any 
machine can or cannot do if we don't carry it. In fact, we are dis- 
couraged from discussing what other machines can do. We 
naturally might be a little biased, and it would not be fair to let 
that bias enter into the customer's final decision. 

Also, I would like to point out that we are not commissioned 
employees. We are salaried. That means that if I don't sell a 
computer to you, or if I don't sell our most expensive system, I 
will still have dinner on my table. What I am saying is that we are 
not all "sharks." 

Your story makes it sound as though all computer salespeople 
are sly and underhanded. You are scaring those people who are 
new to computers and who are considering purchasing one. 

Kevin Oesterle 

3 Shawn Dr. 

Belleville, IL 62221 



Why so defensive, Kevin? Did we say anything about com- 
missions? Did we ever mention sharks or other predators? Did 
we imply that anyone was sly or underhanded? Did you read the 
entire article? 

True, we did say that salespeople should have some knowledge 
of the competition, and we stand by that assertion. We don 't 
expect you to give a sales pitch for your competitors, but we do 
think a customer is entitled to an answer to the question "Why is 
this computer better suited to my needs than the one I can buy 
across the street for $500 less?" Your policy suggests that the 
salesperson needs to know less than his customer, and if that is 
the case, the customer might as well buy mail order and save 
some money. 

We thought that our conclusions were, on the whole, positive. 
After all, we did end by advising buyers to "head for the nearest 
reputable computer store. "And we haven't heard from a single 
terrified customer yet. — EBS 



Japan Revisited 

We received a tremendous outpouring of letters about the 
August (all Japan) issue. Most writers were quite favorable, 
although there were two who said they missed the regular reviews 
and columns: only one said he "found the issue to be a waste. " 
Several writers favorably compared our comprehensive coverage 
to the spotty coverage in some of our competitors; for that we 



are pleased. Another reader wrote to say that she is using parts 
of the issue in an English class for Japanese businessmen and 
scientists. 

However, we received letters from two Japanese people about 
an issue that ought to be clarified, in particular my statement 
that there are no minorities in Japan. In fact, there are, and the 
three or four percent who are in these minorities are subject to 
persistent discrimination in residence, education, and occupation. 
The letter below from Chang Kuk Cho sets the matter 
straight. -DHA 



Dear Editor: 

You wrote that there are no minorities in Japan and that no 
foreigner is welcomed in Japan except on a temporary basis. The 
second part of your statement is true. However, despite Japan's 
dislike of other racial and ethnic peoples, Japan does have her 
share of minorities. To begin with, there are the Ainu, the 
aborigines of the Japanese archipelago. Many Ainu still live in 
the island of Hokkaido, keeping their distinct culture. 

The Okinawans constitute another minority, with a distinct 
set of languages and culture, occupying a whole prefecture in 
the southern sea. Then there are the Koreans, many of whose 
parents were forcibly brought to Japan to become cheap laborers 
during Japan's colonial control of Korea. They now comprise 
the largest ethnic minority in Japan, numbering over 1 million. 
In addition, there are the burakumin, the untouchables of Japanese 
society. Although they are Japanese in ethnicity, the burakumin, 
now about 2 million, are treated as a social caste, allowed to 
have only the most menial kinds of jobs. 

The Japanese like to think of Japan as a mono-ethnic nation 
and consciously or unconsciously avoid talking about the minorities 
in Japan. If none of the Japanese you met mentioned the existence 
of over 4 million minority members, I am not surprised. But I am 
saddened that through your editorial you unintentionally helped 
to preserve and further spread among the American public the 
myth of Japanese monoethnicity. 

Chang Kuk Cho 
Berkeley, CA 



True Grid 

Dear Editor: 

Your HP1 10 article appearing in the July issue was informative 
and enjoyable but you say the following things about the HP110 
that range from incorrect to misleading to personal opinion: 

• Your "thoughts ran again and again to the 'ultimate portable.' " 

• That "the HP1 10 is quite simply the finest notebook computer 
available on the market today." 

• That the HP1 10 is "The most powerful self-contained portable 
computer system ever offered." 

• It has "the sexiest ROM software you have ever imagined." 

• It "is absolutely the sturdiest portable we have seen to date." 

• It "is probably the first practical means of bringing a serious 
and powerful computer to the problem.. .it is built to withstand 
tough field conditions that no other portable would withstand 
over term." 

• "I have never seen a portable computer with anything remotely 
approaching the level of help that the 110 offers." 

• 384K is "more ROM than any microcomputer has used 
before." 

• "If you have $2995 to spend on a portable, there is no other 
machine to consider." 

Evidently you have never used, seen, or even read about the 
Grid Compass, particularly the 1129. Granted, the Compasses 
are primarily AC line powered (one runs only an hour on the 



6 



October 1984 < Creative Computing 



Learning & Fun 
Go Hand n Hand 



tOG/C 








From the Producers of Rocky 's Boots 

Robot Odyssey V 



\ Revolutionary New Educations 
Software Program for Teenagers 
and Young Adults. 



Ilir Kohol ()(I\sm\ I 



nIjim's: 



crUIOIIIKl UHI'K 



U'nhiii rnpnlis and see 



\\a\ iia< k 



Grand Prizes: Androbol 
Io|m> Robots. 
Hi Runner I |> Prizes: . \ i n 1 1 < >i ►« . 
\; ir K.R.E.I): i;< >i >< »i. 



Iilliasi-, KiiImpI I t(l\ sse> 1 



allv. .111 rdnr; 



CS, l<» Mli' UN 



I .earn 1 1< i\\ iii design mi' ••J.r. 
i hips anil i u< iiiiani n >l m lis 



i i mli n i I i>i 



Sn lake mi the challenge. St< >\> hj \> 
local dealer and see RolxH < kij ssej 
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liddlefield Road, Suite 170 • MenloPark, < A 94025 • 415 128 1410 



CIRCLE 155 ON READER SERVICE 



Input/Output 



battery pack, which while small is also external to the computer), 
and "truly" transportable computers would be internally battery 
powered. It has to be on that one criterion alone that you 
evaluated the HP110 against the Compass 1129, because every 
one of your statements above is either false or misleading when 
the 1129 is considered. 

Aside from the one-hour external battery pack, the following 
comparison of the 1 129 and the 1 10 is much more accurate than 
yours: 

• The 1 129 is much closer to the "ultimate computer." 

• The 1129 is easily the finest notebook computer on the 
market today. 

• The 1 129 is the most powerful self contained portable computer 
system ever offered; some more tradeoffs come into play here— the 
384K bubble in the 1129 (where code can be executed from 
directly without transferring it into RAM); the Grid portable 
floppy drive (also capable of being powered by the external 
battery pack). 

• The 1 129 has the sexiest ROM software you ever imagined. 

• The 1 129 is nearly mil spec, is taken on every space shuttle 
flight, was parachuted into Grenada with the U.S. troops, and is 
a very popular product within the tactical military to whom 
ruggedness is essential. 

• The help facilities of the 1129 are better than those of the 
110. 



• The 1129 has 512K of plugable ROM storage unlike the 
384K/£ra?dinthe 110. 

• If you have only $2995 to spend on a portable computer, the 
1 10 is certainly currently the best choice (the 1 129 costs several 
times more). 

I suggest that you read the 1 129 brochures and have your local 
rep come over and demonstrate it to you. I guarantee that you 
will feel more disappointed when he leaves with the 1129 than 
you were to send back your 1 10. 

Prof. E. Douglas Johnson 

Carnegie-Mellon Univ. 

Pittsburgh, PA 15213 



The Grid is undeniably a fine machine— but its power-hungry 
display makes access to an AC line all-important, a fact that 
makes it less than perfect in our admittedly personal opinion. 
For the price of the Compass. Id much rather buy an HPIlOand 
a Toyota Tercel to carry it in. —JJA 

Furthermore, we have asked Grid for an evaluation unit several 
times and have never received so much as a reply. Since our 
reviews are never based on brochures or demonstrations, we 
have been forced to conclude that Grid has decided that our 
readers are not interested in their product. —EBS 



Notices 



$4 Million Giveaway 

Scarborough Systems has announced it 
will sponsor a program designed to provide 
donated software valued at up to $4 million 
to public and private schools this fall. 

Consumers who purchase one of Scar- 
borough's seven educational software pro- 
grams between September 15 and De- 
cember 15 will become donors of another 
Scarborough program of their choice to 
any teacher and school they select. 

Purchasers of any Scarborough edu- 
cational product will receive a "donation 
certificate" entitling them to give a Scar- 
borough product of their choice to a 
teacher and school of their choosing. To 
make the donation, consumers will return 
the certificate with a product warranty 
card and a handling and mailing fee of 
$3.50 to Scarborough. The publisher, in 
turn, will send the designated software 
program to the school with a gift card in- 
dicating the donor's name. 

Scarborough programs include Master- 
Type, Phi Beta Filer, a list management 
program for children; Run for the Money. 
a business game with a space-age theme; 
Songwriter, Picturewriter, Patternmaker, 
and Laser Shapes. Retailing for $39.95 to 
$49.95, all are or soon will be available 



for the Apple II family of computers, 
Commodore 64, IBM PC and PCjr, and 
Atari. 



Announcing... 
The Transatlantic 
Computer Puzzle 
Challenge 

In July 1984, an envelope was placed in 
a room pictured on the cover of the book. 
Microcosm. The winner of the challenge 
will be the first person to phone this room 




and state the name which is written on a 
slip of paper in the envelope. 

The winner will receive £1000 (approx. 
$1400) and a trip across the Atlantic by 
Concorde. 

The puzzle is found in the book and 
can be solved with the aid of a personal 
computer. Look for the book in your local 
bookstore. If you can't find it, watch for 
an ad in next month's Creative Computing 
that will give an address from which it 
can be ordered. 



Free Magazines for 
Schools 

From time to time, we have extra un- 
salable copies of Creative Computing 
which we will furnish free to schools on 
an "as available" basis. These copies are 
generally newsstand returns, damaged, or 
withdrawn from sale (more than one year 
old). 

If you would like to be placed on a list 
to get such copies, please drop us a post- 
card with the quantity you would like 
(multiples of 20 please), the intended use 
(classroom, computer fair handouts, 
teacher handouts, etc.). the approximate 
date you would like them, and the ship- 
ping address. Only one shipment per 
school per semester. 

We make absolutely no guarantees 
whether we will have any extras at all, but 
any we have will be sent out. Send your 
request to Diane Koncur, Creative Com- 
puting, 39 E. Hanover Ave., Morris Plains, 
NJ 07950. 



8 



October 1 984 • Creative Computing 



£ 







INTRODUCING A NEW BREED 

OF ELEPHANT 




Introducing Elephant Premium Floppy Disks. Specially designed for your most demanding busi- 
ness needs, they'll protect your data when other disks won't. In fact, they exceed industry certi- 
fication standards by more than 50%. Which is why we say Elephant Never ForgetsT 
Plus, Elephant Premium is the only floppy disk that features The Elephant Memory System™ 
-a labeling and filing system that makes it easy to store, reference and protect your disks. 
And since they're compatible with the IBM PC* and other popular business 
computers, our Elephants will be right at home in your office. 

For the Elephant dealer nearest you, call 1-800-343-8413. In Massa- 
chusetts, call collect 617-769-8150. 



The Elephant 
Memory System 



ELEPHANT NEVER FORGETS. 

CIRCLE 127 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




Serving busincv fur over 140 yean. 



BUSINESS/PERSONAL 



Epson 

px-a 

"Geneva 







HARDWARE 
EVALUATION 




David H. Ahl 



Epson, you will remember, introduced 
the very first notebook computer, the HX- 
20, in 1982. We were very enthusiastic 
about the machine despite its diminutive 
4-line by 20-character display size. Un- 
fortunately, it got off to a slow start and 
was soon eclipsed by the Tandy Model 
100 with its larger screen and— although 
some will argue with me — more user- 
friendly design. 

Now, two years later, we have put the 
second-generation Epson portable, the PX- 
8 "Geneva," through its paces. Epson has 
done just about everything right the second 
time around. Nevertheless, we have mixed 
feelings about the machine, partially as a 
result of the competition and partially as 
a result of, well, overdoing some of the 
features. "Sounds strange," you say. Read 
on. 

Nifty Hardware 

The PX-8 is a compact machine (8.5" x 
11.5" x 1.8") and weighs just over four 
pounds. In this neat package is a tilt-up 8- 
line by 80-character LCD screen, micro- 
cassette recorder, full-size keyboard (with 
some extras), and, of course, the guts of 
the computer. 

The main mpu is a CMOS version of 
the 8-bit Z80A, the same chip found in 

10 



the HX-20 as well as the Tandy 100. A 
6301 slave mpu is used as a device con- 
troller for the serial interface, LCD display, 
microcassette drive, and ROM capsules. 
A second slave mpu (7508) controls the 
keyboard, clock, and power supply. This 
should give the computer improved 
throughput on most tasks although, of 
course, on our computation-bound bench- 
mark it was no great ball of fire. 



Computer Time 

NEC 8201 1:44 
Epson PX-8 1:44 
Epson HX-20 2:36 
Tandy 100 4:54 

(• Lower is belter) 


Accuracy * 

.187805 
.187805 
.0338745 
.0000002058 



Speed and accuracy of the PX-8 and other 
selected computers. 

The system has 64K of RAM, 32K of 
ROM, four interfaces (RS-232, serial for 
disk drive or printer, analog, and bar code 
reader), built-in speaker, real-time clock, 
microcassette recorder, and provision to 
add an external clamp-on "RAM disk" 
with either 64K or 128K. You might expect 
the RAM disk to be a couple of plug-in 
chips in carriers. Not so; it is a unit the 
full width of the computer that fits under 
the rear of the PX-8 and elevates it about 
one inch. Without the RAM disk, two 
folding legs on the rear of the PX-8 raise 
it a similar amount to provide a comfortable 
typing angle. 

The packaging bespeaks solid quality. 
All switches are recessed slightly so nothing 



HARDWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Epson PX-8 "Geneva" 
Type: Notebook portable 
CPU: 8-bit Z80A 
RAM:64K 
ROM: 32K 

Keyboard: 63 key, full stroke 
Display: LCD, 8 lines x 80 characters 
64 x 480 pixels 

Mass Storage: Built-in microcassette 
drive 

Ports: RS-232, serial, barcode, analog 

Operating System: CP/M 2.2 

Software: (on ROM pack) 

Microsoft Basic 

CP/M Utilities 

MicroPro WordStar 

Portable Calc/Scheduler 
Documentation: Four manuals 
Dimensions: 8.5" x 1 1.5" x 1.8" 

Summary: Solidly-built notebook 

portable computer with excellent 
applications software and many 
novel features. 

Price: $995 

Manufacturer: 

Epson America, Inc. 
3415 Kashiwa St. 
Torrance, CA 90505 
(213) 539-9140 



October 1984 « Creative Computing 



a cle> 



QUARK ANNOUNCES 

jr way to store more than sixty-five floppies. 




TM 




A IOmb hard disk 

for your Apple He, Apple lie, 

Apple III or Macintosh. 



Quark's new QCIO hard disk lets you store the contents 
of more than sixty-five floppies. Even if you're using an 
Apple lie. Which means you can have the equivalent of 
nearly I ive thousand pages of information ready lor instant 
retrieval. 

You'll have room lor do/ens of programs, from com- 
plex accounting software to sales analysis tools. With space 
left over for your answer to "War and Peace'' 

And because there's a distinction between those 
need to know and (hose who want to know . QCIO lets .you 
create password-protected "volumes" of any siiie you choose. 
So you can segment your data to suit your particular needs, 
and protect sensitive information. 



? 



Plus, if you have an Apple He or Macintosh — or a 
I28K Apple He with Apple.* Duodisk dual disk drive — 
QC 10 requires no accijiories The drive simply plugs into 
the disk drive porL^fvvo special switches let you set your 
QC 10 for whale^r computer you use. 

[when you add Quark's Catalyst " program selector, 
i automatically load even copy-protected ProlXXS 



CIRCLE 179 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




programs on QCIO.** And switch between applications 
with a simple keystroke sequence So you won't have to 
change floppies when you need to change programs. 



Best of all. QC l() has a suggested retail price of only 
51.995. So ask for a demonstration today. Just call toll-free. 
I (K00) 543-771 1 . for the name of the Quark dealer 

i you 



=^ -^ = =^ =""== A Subsidiary of 

— - = = = = S Quark Incorporated 

PERIPHERALS ) 

Quark. QC10 and Catalyst arc trademarks ol Quark Incorporated. Apple. 
I'roIX )S and Duodisk arc registered trademarks of Apple Computer, Ills' 
Macintosh is a trademark licensed to Apple Computer In Mcintosh 
oratories. Inc 

If you do not have a Duodisk. or use an Apple III. a special cable is 
available. See your dealer tor details 

dvsl uorks on the Apple lie. lie and Apple III ll is not compatible 
with Macintosh 

Ph o t ogra ph) b) Barbara Kasten 



BUSINESS/PERSONAL 



protrudes beyond the edge of the case. 
Indeed, the reset switch can be pushed 
only with the tip of a ballpoint pen. Con- 
nectors are provided on the back for the 
RS-232 and serial ports, battery recharger, 
and other external devices. A slide control 
beneath the tilt-up LCD screen controls 
the view angle of the liquid crystal ele- 
ments, and a similar control on the side 
controls the speaker volume. 

The display measures 1.3" x 8.7" and, 
depending upon the software being used, 
can operate in up to four modes. (Char- 
acters, incidentally, are formed in a 5 x 7 
dot matrix and do not have descenders.) 
Mode is the standard KOcolumn character 
mode. Mode 1 splits the screen into two 
halves, each 39 characters wide. Mode 2 
is also a split screen mode but the widths 
of the two windows can be set by the user 
in the range of 8 to 48 characters. Mode 3 
is a graphics mode, although text may be 
displayed in this mode also. 

Complicating matters somewhat is the 
fact that the real screen is actually a window 
on a virtual screen which may be much 
larger than the real screen (up to 40 lines 
and 80 columns). Moreover, in Modes 1 
and 2, there are two virtual screens which, 
in Mode 2, may be viewed independently 
of one another. In general, unless you are 
writing applications programs, you will 
not have to worry about these screen 
modes. However, a rudimentary under- 
standing of them will give you an insight 
as to how Portable WordStar, Calc, and 
Scheduler achieve some remarkable 
effects. Of course, for the adventuresome, 
all these screen modes are available from 
Basic, and to a limited extent, from the 
CP/M operating system (using CONFIG). 

The keyboard has 63 full-stroke keys 
which have the excellent feel that we 
have come to expect from Epson. The 
keyboard uses a hard stroke design and 
aural feedback is provided by the noise of 
the key hitting the bottom of its travel. 
Indeed, the keyboard is rather noisy (like 
the Model 100) and we felt it would have 
benefitted from some acoustic damping. 

Layout of the keys is perfectly standard 
with no keys in unexpected places. The 
orange cursor control keys at the right 
are arranged in a reasonably logical pattern; 
in the same area, we find the CLR/DEL, 
SCRN/INS, and HOME/BS keys. We won't 
explain the function of each of these special 
keys, but we were disconcerted to note 
that they functioned differently in the ap- 
plications software packages than they 
did in CP/M and Basic. 

A very thoughtful touch is the series of 
three LEDs above the center of the key- 
board which indicate caps lock, numeric 
keypad on, and insert on. The keyboard 
provides access to every printing char- 
acter including 32 graphics characters 
(lines, circles, card suits, car, plane, man, 
telephone, etc.). For the most part, these 
12 




Top: LCD screen displays 8 lines of 80 characters. 
Bottom: Standard layout keyboard has excellent feel. 




characters will not print out unless your 
printer is equipped with a special ROM. 
All keys repeat when held down for about 
one-half second. 

Above the standard keyboard is a line 
of nine rectangular function keys. Leftmost 
is a red STOP key, which functions in 
Basic and CP/M but generally not in 
applications software packages. Three of 
the function keys have permanent labels: 
ESC, PAUSE, and HELP. As with STOP, 
they may or may not be implemented in 
applications software packages. The other 
five light gray function keys are pro- 
grammable and, in conjunction with 
SHIFT, provide ten functions which may 
be set in software or from the CONFIG 
program in CP/M. 

The microcassette recorder uses stand- 
ard tapes and usually is completely under 
software control, although it is possible 
to use the function keys for manual 
operation. We found the recorder useful 
for saving Basic programs but extremely 
cumbersome to use with WordStar. In 
fact, in the WordStar manual on page 
9.17 it says, "The microcassette tape can 
be used to store files" and five paragraphs 
later on page 9.18 it says, "You cannot 
save files onto the microcassette tape." 
Not very helpful! 

A clock module manages the software 
clock and controls alarm and wake fun- 
ctions which allow the PX-8 to switch on 



and present a message or start a program 
running. If the computer is in use, and 
alarm or wake time is reached, the pro- 
gram being run will be interrupted. A 
wide range of time options are available 
for these functions, including a specific 
date and time, every hour, every 24 hours, 
once a month, every day for a month, 
every minute for ten minutes every hour, 
or practically any combination you can 
dream up. 

The PX-8 uses two sets of batteries. 
The main NiCad battery pack provides 
power for running the PX-8, while the 
back-up batteries hold programs in memory 
when tiie main battery voltage falls below 
a useable level. According to the manual, 
"The maximum length of use on battery 
power is 15 hours without input/output 
operations" (does that mean the key- 
board?). The AC charger/adapter will 
restore a full charge to the batteries in 
eight hours. 

CP/M Operating System 

When the PX-8 is turned on, a number 
of routes can be taken by the built-in 
operating system. Most typically, a menu, 
which lists the command (COM) programs 
on devices B and C, will appear. These 
devices are ROM cartridges which plug 
in the bottom of the PX-8. We used four 
such cartridges: Basic, CP/M utilities, 
Portable WordStar and Portable Calc 

October 1984 « Creative Computing 



It Speaks For Itself 

now with audio learning cassette 




BUSINESS/PERSONAL 



(which includes Portable Scheduler). Only 
two can be plugged in at one time. A 
program is selected from the menu by 
moving the cursor over the program name 
and pressing RETURN. If you prefer to 
work directly from CP/M, the built-in 
operating system, the ESC key will exit 
the menu and bring up the familiar C 
prompt. This is the approach necessary 
to load programs from any of the other 
devices: A is the RAM disk, D through G 
are floppy disk drives, and H is the 
microcassette. If you expect to use a pro- 
gram from any of these devices regularly, 
it is possible to rebuild the menu program 
to include it. 

CP/M functions just as it would on a 
desktop computer and has the usual com- 
mands and utilities, cryptic error messages, 
and other idiosyncrasies. In addition, it 
has two programs unique to the PX-8. 
TERM is a program that allows the use of 
the PX-8 as a terminal to another computer, 
remote database, or on-line service bureau. 
The manual provides extensive instructions 
for using the PX-8 to communicate with 
an Epson QX-10 desktop computer al- 
though the directions are applicable for 
other CP/M systems as well. 

FILINK is used to transfer files between 
the PX-8 and other computers. It is more 
specialized than TERM in that it supports 
specific protocols and is used solely for 
sending and receiving files. From the 
manual, it would appear that FILINK must 
be used with another computer also running 
FILINK, and the only other machine for 
which it is available at the moment is the 
QX-10. 

CP/M was the first microcomputer 
operating system I ever used (on an Altair 
in 1976), and thinking about it conjures 
up all kinds of fond and not-so-fond 
memories. Some of the latter surfaced 
when, after using the PX-8 for just 15 
minutes, I got the message BDOS ERROR 
ON D: BAD SECTOR. The manual said 
to press the RETURN key to ignore the 
error. Ha! Five presses of the RETURN 
key later, I had a screen full of the same 
error message. I tried STOP, ESC, HELP, 
everything.. .but there was no escape. 

In desperation, I turned the computer 
off and back on. Ah; finally the menu re- 
appeared, but the minute I tried to select 
something, the screen filled with the same 
BDOS ERROR message. Now, in real des- 
peration, I pressed the recessed reset 
switch. But to no avail. The PX-8 has an 
excellent memory; it doesn't forget any- 
thing—not even error messages. Finally, 
for no explicable reason, a series of 
CTRL/ESC keypresses returned me to 
the operating system. To add insult to 
injury, the message was "incorrect"; what 
I had tried to do (by mistake) was write to 
a write protected disk. 

Not being content to leave well enough 
alone, I experimented with some other 
14 



commands that I felt an unwitting user 
might invoke. For example, the system 
uses double sided disks, so it might be 
logical to think of side I as drive 1 and 
side two as drive 2. So I tried to save a file 
to the second drive (E) and got the same 
BAD SECTOR message that just wouldn't 
go away. Not nice! 

If you shut off the machine while you 
are in Basic and turn it on later, it will still 
be in Basic with the same program in 
memory, a nice feature. However, just try 
to get directly to CP/M when you power 
back up. It is not easy. I finally found that 
the combination of STOP/ESC would 
usually do it. 

Perhaps warnings about all these naughty 
things are in the manuals— unlike some 
writers, I am not opposed to reading 
manuals— however, I do not feel that one 
should have to read two 300-page manuals 
before using the computer. 

Basic 

The Basic supplied with the PX-8 is 
"Epson-enhanced Microsoft Basic for the 
PX-8." Quite a mouthful. In general, it is 
quite similar to Microsoft GW Basic 
although, of course, it is oriented to the 
PX-8 LCD display and lacks certain gra- 
phics commands like CIRCLE (although 
LINE is included). Actually, a variety of 
graphics statements and functions are 
included specifically for the 480 by 64 
pixel screen. Also, as mentioned earlier, 
Basic includes statements for using the 
four screen modes. 

A screen editor allows changing program 
lines without entering a separate edit mode. 
Basic also has statements that support 
communication through the RS-232 serial 
interface and statements that make it 



possible to use the built-in microcassette 
recorder like a disk drive. 

As in the HX-20, the Basic program 
area is divided into five parts so five pro- 
grams can be stored simultaneously. As 
in a timesharing system (also the HX-20), 
these areas are accessed via a LOGIN 
command. One rather nasty problem I 
had was trying to save programs in these 
areas. (With the HX-20, the problem is 
deleting a program.) Actually, after poring 
over the manual and experimenting at 
great length, I determined that programs 
can be saved only to cassette, RAM disk, 
or floppy disk, and not in the five program 
areas. 

Portable WordStar 

As its name suggests. Portable Word- 
Star is adapted from standard WordStar 
to run on the PX-8. The adaptation was 
done by MicroPro International, so the 
product is quite true to the original. It is 
our custom to write a computer review 
on the target machine whenever possible. 
This turned out to be remarkably easy 
and straightforward on the PX-8 as Word- 
Star was familiar and behaved exactly as 
expected. Yes, some of the more esoteric 
features are stripped out— after all, the 
package has to fit in a 32K ROM car- 
tridge—but it is remarkably complete. 

Since we assume a basic familiarity with 
WordStar, it is probably easier to list the 
missing features rather than the included 
ones. Missing are: help menus, file di- 
rectory, file renaming, paragraph tab, 
hyphen help, soft hyphens, column mode, 
decimal tab, and print control display 
toggle. Since I rarely use any of these, I 
did not find Portable WordStar at all 
limiting. 




Clip-on thermal printer. RAM packs, the PX-8, and floppy drive. 

October 1 984 ° Creative Computing 



FASTER THAN 5 NANO- 
SECONDS, STRONG 
AND SOLID STATE 

Electra-Guard 
stops every spike, 
glitch and surge 
in less than 5 
billionths of a 
second. All you do is plug 
it in. No more overvoltage. 
We build it solid 
Diodes, solder, 
wire and case 
—all are 
heavy duty 
It far ex- 
ceeds the 
surge 
voltage guides for 
AC power voltages. 

Its simple style and neutral 
color suit your home 
or office. 



PLUG IN 
THE BEST BUY 





PROTECTION: 
ELECTRA-GUARD. 




$49.95 to $79.95 

Electra-Guard System 2 
(above left) keeps six 
devices safe from over- 
voltage. Cost: $49.95. 
The System 4 (center) with 
EMI/RFI filter; protects 3 
devices from overvoltage 
and electronic noise. 
Cost $79.95. 
Electra-Guard System 12 
(far right) has an on/off 



switch and 6 foot extension 
cord. It protects 6 devices 
for $59.95. 

These Electra-Guards 
are the best buy in surge 
protection on the market. 
No others give as much 
protection for the money. 
ELECTRA-GUARD 
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CIRCLE 208 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




WW 



"A 

A CLASSIC 

— In/oWor/d 
It's a classic that keeps getting 
better. The completely updated 
and redesigned 1984/85 edition of 

thk Computer cookbook 

features: 

^n • Hundreds of illustrations, 
maps, charts, and product 
photographs. 

^■a • Two-color text, with impor- 
tant items highlighted in red. 

^m • Marginal notes which 
amplify text entries. 

Tin: Computer C(x)kikx)k is 

actually a computer encyclopedia, 
one of the most comprehensive 
available, alphabetically arranged 
for easy use. Its entries range from 
nuts-and-bolts items like IBM's 
product line to such exotica as 
computer-generated astrological 
charts. New material includes: 

^m • The latest in "low-end" 
home computers 

■^ • ( Complete coverage of new 
products — including the PC Jr, 
Adam, and Macintosh 

^m • Biologies, optoelectronics, 
robots, supercomputers, new 
Japanese experimental computers 

^h • Names and addresses of over 
1.000 hardware and software 
sources 

And much more. As much fun to 
read as it is an indispensable 
reference source, Tut: COMPl ITER 
Cookbook belongs in even 

microcomputer library. $14.95 
oversized paperback— wherever 
computer books are sold. 



/^ computer^ 
Mcookbook; 

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BUSINESS/PERSONAL 



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CIRCLE 133 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



One thing I found a bit annoying is that 
the top two lines on the screen are used 
for the status information (program name, 
page, line, column, and operating mode) 
and the ruler line (shows tab stops and 
margins). Furthermore, the package does 
not use the bottom line on the screen; 
hence, only five lines of text are displayed 
at a time. With a 65-character line length 
(printer width = screen width) this means 
that the PX-8 displays exactly the same 
amount of text as the Model 100 (which 
has a display half as large)! 

As with many other portable computers, 
moving through a large text file is agony. 
To scroll through one double-spaced page 
takes 26 seconds. Hence, to insert a cor- 
rection in the middle of a 16-page document 
like this review takes four or five minutes. 
A command to move the cursor to a par- 
ticular page would be very welcome 
(MicroPro, are you listening?). 

Portable WordStar comes with a 200- 
page manual, fold-out menu map, three- 
panel command reference card, and 26 
sticky keytop labels with control key 
markings. 

Other Applications 

Portable Calc is an electronic spread- 
sheet program and includes the most used 
spreadsheet functions as found on desk- 
top machines. The design approach was 
to economize on prompts and messages 
but try to retain the functions and cal- 
culating power of a larger program. We 
tried a few simple problems but did not 
put Portable Calc through an exhaustive 
evaluation. It has a complete array of 
arithmetic and logical functions, including 
MAX, MIN. LOOKUP, and AVG. It does 
not, however, have any statistical, trig, or 
financial functions. Replicating, inserting, 
deleting, saving, and printing are all handled 
quite adequately. 

Portable Scheduler is a 25-day appoint- 
ment scheduler that permits notations to 
be made in half-hour increments. In 
addition, alarms can be set at designated 
times and the next 24 days displayed in 
graphical form. I confess to being partial 
to a standard paper calendar and did not 
make use of this program (other than to 
make sure it loaded). 

Peripherals 

Unlike the situation with the HX-20 in 
which peripherals and software were not 
available until the computer had been 
out for more than a year, Epson is con- 
currendy releasing a battery-operated 3&", 
double density, double sided, microfloppy 
disk drive. The drive measures 8.2" x 4.8" 
x 2" and has built-in NiCad batteries that 
provide up to 50 hours of service between 
charges. Formatted capacity is 320K per 
disk. The drive is connected to the com- 
puter through the serial port and tends to 
be somewhat slower than a standard desk- 

16 



top floppy disk; nevertheless, it is a sub- 
stantial improvement over nothing at all, 
and considerably faster than the micro- 
cassette recorder. 

RAM disk units in capacities of 64K 
and 128K (60K and 120K usable memory) 
also will be available almost immediately. 
Other peripherals promised are a direct 
connect modem, acoustic coupler, and 
80-column thermal printer. 

Pricing 

The PX-8 with 64K, built-in CP/M, AC 
charger, CP/M utility ROM, Basic ROM. 
Portable WordStar ROM, Portable Calc/ 
Scheduler ROM and four manuals is 
priced at $995. The disk drive is $599; 
60K RAM disk, $329; 120K RAM disk, 
$460; direct connect modem, $180; 
acoustic coupler, $120; and thermal print- 
er, $250. We think most people will want 
to get the basic unit with either a RAM 
disk or floppy disk drive, thus putting the 
total price between $1300 and $1600. 

Is It Worth It? 

I admitted to having mixed feeling about 
the PX-8 at the beginning. Some of my 
uneasiness stems from the eight-line display 
in the face of other manufacturers intro- 
ducing 16- and 24-line displays. I under- 
stand that this was done to hold the cost 
of the basic unit under $1000, but is that 
really a magic price point? 

Second, the PX-8 does lots more than 
the Model 100 and has a "real" operating 
system (CP/M 2.2) built in but this makes 
it more difficult to use. The machine has 
many novel features like the alarm/wakeup 
facility but it takes nine pages in the manual 
to describe how to use it. Motoring 
magazines sometimes say, "the controls 
fell naturally to hand"; the alarm/wakeup 
function most decidedly does not. 

Facilities like the Password module sound 
wonderful if you want to protect your 
computer and files against use by "un- 
authorized" people. However, this feature 
is incredibly dangerous since once a pass- 
word has been assigned, it is impossible 
to use the machine or remove the pass- 
word without knowing what it is. Have 
you ever forgotten a familiar phone num- 
ber? At least there are phone books; in 
the case of the PX-8 you have no recourse. 

Lest I leave you with negative vibrations, 
I should say that in general I am most 
enthusiastic about the PX-8. There is no 
other computer under $1000 with com- 
prehensive word processing and spread- 
sheet programs. The built-in microcassette 
recorder is a real plus, although I would 
still recommend a RAM disk or floppy 
disk drive. The unit is solidly built, and 
with the NiCad rechargeable batteries you 
need not buy stock in Duracell. If you 
don't yet have a notebook computer, be 
sure to give the PX-8 a close look. ■ 

CIRCLE 400 ON READER SERVICE CARD 

October 1 984 c Creative Computing 



I 



with 3 



together for your Apple 

ss expensive, easier to 

uaia .v.c ~ 3 - d more , a,^. .<.» c k college 

or IBM Compu erThey ^ not read „ k e 

SuS n^vanredLoo^o-goo ^ 

C ° U want more *tai« into^"^^ anO they" 
- . r P us for our easy to rea ob)|gatlon 



IVI 

re ason you buy a conjw"- « or , B M Compu KJ^£ nuaB tf 

ss^^^ssr More7J u^--— - 

. make a choice . hw r 

How do you makes — 



You read tneau^'/ 
r^nne but many of them ^-— more you .. 



store? Just write - 
come to you by r- 
.. i 



WE WAKE 




What type of printer 
should you buy? 




Dot Matrix Printers. 

At draft speed, characters 
come out crisp and clear, 
at up to 400 cps. 



Dot Matrix Printers. 

At correspondence quality speed, 
characters are so readable they 
make the term "computer printout" 
almost obsolete. 



Ink Jet Printers. 

Full color graphics and 
text capabilities make 
these some of the most 
versatile printers 
in the world. 



It's a simple fact: Xerox 
has the widest range of 
printers in the world. 

From dot matrix printers ^^^^^^^^ 
that can churn out 400 characters per second, 
to laser printers that run up to a miraculous 
120 pages a minute. 

Included in the Xerox family of printers is 
our Diablo® line, which many people consider 
to be one of the best in the world. 

In fact, Diablo® daisywheel printers have 




been voted 
number 
one 
when it 
comes to brand prefer- 
ence,* but that should 
come as no surprise since 
we had a head start on the rest 
of the industry, inventing the daisywheel back 
in 1972. 
Then, when you add our high quality, color 



XEROX 




Printer typography enlarged 40x. 



Daisywheel Printers. 

We invented the category, 
and now its the accepted 
standard among letter- 
quality printers. 



Laser Printers. 

The state of the art in 
high volume, whisper quiet 
high resolution 
electronic printing. 



graphic ink jet printers to the list, and con- 
sider how most Xerox printers are IBM com- 
patible, unusually quiet and reliable, it starts 
becoming obvious why Xerox is the type of 
printer you should buy. 

So if you're in the market for a printer, call 
1-800-833-2323, ext. 800, or your local Xerox 
office, or mail in this coupon. Once you do, 
you'll discover printers that are anything 
but typical. 

•Source: Dmtmaim MapaiHe WU Hr.m.l Pnferm <■ Siwlv 
of printer preference by end users and ( )KM*>. 



Fw more information, call 800-833-2323, ext. 800, or your 
local Xerox office, or mail in this coupon: Xerox Corp., 
Box 24, Rochester, New York 14692. 

d Please have a sales representative contact me. 
d Please send me more information. 



NAME 



TITLE 



U)MP\NV 



ADDRESS 



CITY 



STATE 



ZIP 



pw>ni 



I2J4 



XI W )\ .Hid 01 AHI < ) art n-K.slm-d Ir.Kknutk-. ..I XI K( )X ( ( )KIH WATION 

CIRCLE 144 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



BUSINESS/PERSONAL 



A New Keyboard 
for die PC 



Which One is Right For You? 



As the IBM PC moves into more and 
more offices, more and more touch typ- 
ists are finding that the wonderful PC 
has a not-so-wonderful keyboard. We 
examined the replacement keyboards 
offered by several manufacturers and 
discovered that their approaches to solv- 
ing the problems of the PC keyboard 
vary greatly. 

Actually, we like many of the features 
of the IBM PC keyboard. It is detach- 
able, which is a major improvement over 
other computer keyboards. Previously, 
manufacturers like Apple, Tandy, and 
Commodore made the keyboard an inte- 
gral part of the system unit. IBM put the 
PC keyboard at the end of a six-foot 
coiled cord, which lets you hold the key- 
board on your lap or just move it out of 
the way. In fact, you can argue that IBM 
started a trend, since most new comput- 
ers now feature detachable keyboards. 

We like the 10 function keys on the 
PC keyboard. Again, IBM was one of 
the first manufacturers to put separate 
function keys on the keyboard. We also 
like the separate numeric keypad, which 
makes for fast data entry. We think the 
keys are well-sculpted with a nice, solid 
feel, and the aural feedback is good and 
loud. 

We also like the slant adjustment, 
which allows you to vary the angle of 
the keyboard. A nice extra feature is the 
ridge running across the top of the key- 
board. This lets you prop a manual or 
book between the keyboard and system 
unit, a feature that can be very, very 
handy. 

Unfortunately, the PC keyboard is far 
from perfect. Ironically, the PC does not 
conform to the now-standard IBM 
Selectric layout, and it aggravates touch 
typists no end. It places an extra key 
between the Z and Shift keys and locates 
20 



Russ Lockwood 



the Return key slightly farther above the 
Shift key than most of us are used to. 
Why IBM did not follow the layout of 
their own successful Selectric typewriter 
keyboard remains a mystery. 

What to Look For 

The most important feature is the feel 
or touch of the keyboard. Touch refers 
to the tactile sensation you experience as 



If you are a touch 

typist, you will 

probably prefer a 

Selectric layout. 



you type. The IBM PC uses a hard 
touch, which is reminiscent of a type- 
writer; you must depress each key fully 
for a character to register. Other key- 
boards use a soft touch, which requires 
only a light tap to input a character. If 
you switch from a hard to a soft touch 
keyboard, plan on spending a few hours 
just to accustom yourself to this change. 

If you are a touch typist, you will 
probably prefer a Selectric layout. The 
misplaced backslash and Return keys on 
the PC keyboard will slow you down 
and cause a great deal of frustration. 
Also, look for word labels rather than 
cryptic arrows on the Return, Tab, 
Backspace, and Shift keys. 

Sharing cursor control keys with a 
numeric keypad is adequate, but to 



manipulate the cursor with greater 
speed, a separate set of keys is far 
superior. Better yet, the cursor control 
keys should be in a logical diamond 
formation and special text editing keys, 
such as insert and delete, should be 
above or below the cursor controls. 

LEDs on the Caps Lock and Num 
Lock keys are also desirable, as are 
raised bumps on the J and F keys and 
the 5 on the numeric keypad. An extra 
Return key on the numeric keypad helps 
speed data entry considerably. 

Do not overlook the weight of the 
keyboard, especially if you use it on your 
lap most of the time. The PC keyboard is 
fairly heavy, and after using it for a few 
hours, you might feel that circulation to 
your legs has been cut off. A lighter key- 
board reduces fatigue and is easier to 
move about. 

For those with more esoteric tastes, 
keyboards with a Dvorak layout are 
available. Unlike QWERTY, the Dvorak 
layout places, from left to right, the A, O, 
E, U, I, D, H, T, N, S keys on the home 
row, with the common letters located 
near the stronger fingers. The result is 
that an accomplished Dvorak typist types 
faster than a QWERTY typist. However, 
a great deal of retraining is necessary to 
realize this speed advantage. 

Frankly, most people have adapted to 
the idiosyncrasies of the PC keyboard be- 
cause they had no other choice. But in 
this age of better mousetraps, several 
manufacturers are building keyboards to 
correct the problems of the PC keyboard. 

Maxi-Switch 8505 

The Maxi-Switch 8505 keyboard lay- 
out is an exact duplicate of the IBM PC 
keyboard, with the exception of LEDs 
on the Caps Lock and Num Lock keys. 
All the advantages and problems of the 
October 1984 c Creative Computing 



Educational Software 
That Works: 



i 



SpeUIt! 



Spell. 



Spell expertly 1000 of the most misspelled 
words. Learn the spelling rules, improve 
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spelling words 



3d 



ages 10 - adult / 2 disks: $49 95 V 



Math. 



Math Blaster! 



Master addition, subtraction, multiplication, 
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• 

ages 6-12/2 disks: $49.95 




Word. 



Word Attack! 



Add 675 new words to your vocabulary - 
with precise definitions and sentences 
demonstrating usage Build your skills with 
4 fun-filled activities, including an arcade 
game! Add your own words. 

ages 8 - adult / 2 disks: $49.95 



Read. 



Speed Reader II 

increase your reading speed and improve 
comprehension! Six exercises designed by 
reading specialists vastly improve your 
reading skills. Chart your own progress with 
35 reading selections and comprehension 
quizzes. Add your own reading materials. 

high school, college & adult / 2 disks: $69.95 




The Davidson 

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For your Apple, IBM or commodore 64. 
Ask your dealer today. 

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m California call: (215) 373-9473 

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CIRCLE 124 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



' y£ 



NEA" 



Apple. IBM and Commode*. 64 we trademarks respectively of Apple Computers. Inc . International Business Machines Corp . and Commodore Business Machines. Inc 



BUSINESS/PERSONAL 



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V m- 1 I TT. I I 



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77i<? Maxi-Switch 8505. 

PC keyboard layout are included. 

The keys are well sculpted and the 
touch is good — not as hard as the PC 
but much firmer than a soft touch. The 
keys depress fully, although the throw is 
not as long as on the PC keyboard, and 
the distinct click of the PC keyboard is 
lacking. Overall, we liked the feel of the 
keyboard very much. 

The main inducement for buying the 
Maxi-Switch is the weight. At 4.3 lbs, it 
is 16% lighter than the PC keyboard, 
which weighs in at 5. 1 lbs, and it can sit 
comfortably on your lap for hours on 
end. 

For those who leave the keyboard on 
the desktop, the Maxi-Switch has a 
three-position slant adjustment — one 
position more than the IBM PC key- 
board offers. Maxi-Switch wisely kept 
the ridge along the top of the keyboard. 

Maxi-Switch also manufactures the 
8506 keyboard, which places the Shift 
and Return keys in their proper places, 
labels the Return, Tab, Backspace, and 
Shift keys, and adds a Return key on the 
numeric keypad. Maxi-Switch also 
makes the 8507, a Dvorak keyboard. 

Titan Data Systems Sure-Stroke 

After our use test, we were left with 
mixed feelings about the TDS Sure- 
Stroke. It had some nice touches which 
we'll mention later, but also some idio- 
syncrasies which we found awkward. 
Others may not. Read on. 

We are convinced that the Sure- 
Stroke has the world's largest Return 
key — 1.5" x 1.5" to be exact. Compared 
to the 1.5" x 0.5" Return key on the PC 
keyboard, this is huge. You cannot pos- 
sibly miss this Return key. 

Unfortunately, Titan did not label it as 
such, preferring to use a cryptic arrow. 
The Backspace, Tab, and Shift keys are 
nicely labeled, but not the Return key. 
Furthermore, the Return key could be 
better placed. Titan put the tilde (~) key 
directly above the Shift key. We would 
have prefered to find the tilde tucked 
underneath the backslash and Backspace. 
22 



The Titan Data Systems Sure-Stroke. 



Titan places the ten function keys 
across the top of the keyboard instead of 
on the lefthand side. If you are used to 
finding the function keys on the left, you 
must take time to get used to the change. 
In addition, the Num Lock, End, Pg Up, 
Dn, and Scroll Lock keys are also placed 
on the top — a clumsy arrangement at 
best. 

The numeric keypad has a Return 
key, although like the giant main Return 
key, it is labeled with the cryptic arrow. 
Unfortunately, Titan did not place a 
raised bump on the 5 key, but did 
thoughtfully include a multiplication 
key on the keypad. 



You need the dexterity 

of a concert pianist to 

move the cursor with 

any sort of speed. 



Titan also includes separate cursor 
control keys, but they are located above 
the numeric keypad. This awkward 
placement makes these keys difficult to 
reach. You must reach over the numeric 
keypad to use the cursor controls, a 
clumsy procedure at first, but one to 
which we quickly become accustomed. 

Although three of the cursor keys are 
in a logical half-diamond formation, the 
fourth is not. To make cursor control 
matters worse, the End, Page Up, and 
Page Down keys are with the function 
key grouping, located between the Num 
Lock and Scroll Lock keys. Again, this 
is awkward and clumsy. You need the 
dexterity of a concert pianist to move the 
cursor with any sort of speed. 

Finally, the cursor control key group- 
ing has an unmarked, undocumented 
key to the right of the right arrow. It 
does not print a character on the screen, 
move the cursor, or invoke a function, 
but every alternate press elicited a beep- 



ing sound. Frankly, we were baffled. 

Then quite by accident, we discovered 
that the key turns the aural feedback, 
that beeping noise, on and off. After 10 
minutes of typing with this arcade noise 
toggled on, we were searching for ear- 
muffs. We were pleased to finally deter- 
mine the function of this key, but it 
should have been labeled. 

Fortunately, the normal keystroke 
click is subdued and absolutely marvel- 
ous. It is not as pronounced as the click 
on the PC keyboard, but it is reassuring 
and comes as close to optimum aural 
feedback as a keyboard can get. The tac- 
tile feedback is just as good. The keys 
require a firm press and have a nice, 
solid feel to them. We are very im- 
pressed with these facets of the Titan 
keyboard. 

The Caps Lock key has an LED, but 
the Num Lock does not. Of all the key- 
boards we tested, only Titan features an 
on/off LED for the keyboard. It is a nice 
touch. 

One Little, Two Little, 
Three Little Keyboards 

Colby sent us an evaluation unit of its 
Key-2 plug-in keyboard. Unfortunately, 
after 15 minutes of use, it emitted a 
death squeal, the LED lights on the 
Caps Lock and Num Lock keys came 
on, and it refused to function. Back it 
went. 

The second keyboard also lasted 15 
minutes and died with two melancholy 
LED lights staring at us. That one also 
went back. At that point, a Colby 
spokesperson admitted that some of the 
boards were defective, but claimed the 
problem had been fixed. 

With trepidation, we plugged in the 
third keyboard, which looked exactly 
like the other two, and booted up the 
PC. Eureka! It worked. 

The Key-2 is the smallest of the key- 
boards we tested — just 15" wide, com- 
pared to the 19" width of the PC 
keyboard. It is also the lightest, weighing 
in at 3.5 pounds. This makes the Key-2 

October 1 984 c Creative Computing 




flW 



**fcr 







WELCOME TO THE 
INFORMATION AGE 



You've been stuck in Ihe "Stone Age" 
of computers for too long, wrestling 
with the same problems which have 
plagued users since the beginning — 
complexity, confusion and software 
which forces you to do things the 
computer's way. 

Well, step out of the cave and into the 
dawn of a new age. VALDOCS IS DIF- 
FERENT. . . ITS EASY TO USE. 

Valdocs was the first integrated soft- 
ware system. As such it marked the way 
out and other companies began to follow. 
But there's more to it than that. 

Making it easy was the hard part. We 
studied people as much as computers, and 
discovered that for a feature to be useful, 
it must be useable: not just by computer- 
jocks, but by anyone. 



NOW THE EASIEST TO USE SYSTEM 
ALSO HAS THE MOST FEATURES. 
First we made it easy. Now.aftcr 18 months 
of development, no system in the world 
offers more features than Vhldocs 2. 

Just the list of integrated modules is 
amazing: wordprocessor. spreadsheet, 
appointment book, file indexer, mini- 
database, electronic mail system, address 
book, mailing label system, business 
graphics package, optional drawing tools 
and much more. . . far too much to cover 
in an ad. 

Ease of use coupled with enormous 
computing power. Sound too good to be 
true? It was. . .until now! Kildocs 2 launches 
you into the Information Age. 

Phone toll free 1-800-CALL NOW, 
anytime, for a free 24 page color booklet 

CIRCLE 184 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




describing Valdocs 2 in detail . and a free 
gift. Or check it out at your nearest 
Epson dealer. 

Valdocs" is available exclu- jA 

sively on Epson personal i/jj/ft'/y/ 

computers 

I pwiiox HtiN jujavnuik "* 

[pM»n AiiK'rK j. Iik 

VALDOCS: 
THE MOST 
IMPORTANT 
COMPONENT 
IS YOU. 



BUSINESS/PERSONAL 




The Colby Key-2. 



very easy to move around. 

The Key-2 corrects most of the mis- 
takes of the PC keyboard. The Shift and 
Return keys are in their proper places. 
The Caps Lock and Num Lock keys 
have LED lights. The numeric keypad, 
which doubles as cursor control keys as 
on the PC keyboard, has its own Return 
key. The Shift, Tab, Return, and Back- 



Once you become 

accustomed to the feel 

and tap the keys 

instead of trying to 

press them through the 

bottom of the 

keyboard, you can type 

quite fast. 



space keys are labeled with arrows and 
words. 

Colby places the 10 function keys and 
four extra cursor control keys across the 
top of the keyboard. Unfortunately, the 
extra cursor keys are arranged in a line 
rather than a logical diamond formation, 
diminishing their effectiveness. 

That's Ergonomics 

Unlike other keyboards, the Key-2 
keys are enclosed on three sides by a 
three-quarter inch high wall. In theory, 
by running your hand along the ridge, 
you can find the extra cursor control 
keys in the top left corner, function key 
10 in the top right corner, and the Re- 
turn key on the numeric keypad on the 
righthand side of the keyboard. 

In practice, the wall gives us keyboard 
claustrophobia — rather like typing in a 
box. Furthermore, we keep smacking the 
wall with our left hand, an especially 
aggravating constriction. After a few 
hours of typing, we were wishing the 

24 



The Key Tronic KB 5151. 



wall was not there. By the end of the 
day, we were ready to take a hacksaw to 
it. 

The feel is adequate, although the 
keys do not seem as solid as on the PC 
keyboard. The aural feedback for the 
Colby keyboard is more subdued than 
that on the PC keyboard, but again, 
nothing special. 

The Colby keyboard is not slant 
adjustable. Presumably, the thin profile 
of the Key-2 does not allow for spring- 
action legs. It does have three rubber 
feet on the bottom of the keyboard, 
which keep it rock steady on the table. 

Key Tronic KB 5151 

The Key Tronic KB 5151 is the larg- 
est of the four keyboards, measuring a 
whopping 20.25". With the extra space, 
it also offers the best layout of the key- 
boards, dividing the keys into four dis- 
tinct groupings — alphanumeric, cursor 
control, numeric keypad, and a row of 
function and specialty keys. 

The KB 5151 corrects the mistakes of 
the PC keyboard. The Shift and Return 
keys are located where they should be. 
The Caps Lock and Num Lock keys 
have LEDs. The Shift, Return, Tab, and 
Backspace keys are labeled with words, 
not arrows, and the F and J and the 5 
key on the numeric keypad have raised 
bumps. 

Unfortunately, Key Tronic places the 
Caps Lock key above the left Shift key 
and the Control key to the left of the 
Caps Lock key. You must make a 
mighty long stretch to reach the Control 
key with your pinky. The placement is 
awkward and clumsy, and for control 
key-intensive software, downright 
aggravating. In addition, one of our 
testers complained that with her fingers 
on the home row, she was unable to see 
the LED on the Caps Lock. 

The tactile feel takes some getting 
used to. At first, the KB 5151 feels 
mushy because it has a very soft touch. 
However, once you become accustomed 
to the feel and tap the keys instead of 



trying to press them through the bottom 
of the keyboard, you can type quite fast. 
We are not saying you can double your 
typing speed, but the less effort and mo- 
tion you need to expend, the faster you 
can type. 

The numeric keypad doubles as cursor 
control keys. Key Tronic adds a Return 
key for fast data entry. 

The dedicated cursor control keys are 
arranged in a logical diamond forma- 
tion, with the Home, End, Page Up, and 
Page Down keys in the appropriate 
spots. The special editing keys, Insert 
and Delete, are above the cursor keys. 

You must toggle the cursor keys on 
and off with a special Cursor Pad key. 
When the cursor keys are activated, the 
numeric keypad automatically switches 
to numbers. Thus, you use only one set 
of cursor keys at a time. We wonder why 
Key Tronic bothers to toggle the dedi- 
cated cursor control keys on and off. 
Not a big point, but we wonder. 



The first question is 

whether you are 

dissatisfied with the 

IBM PC keyboard and 

want to switch 

to another. 



The function keys are divided into two 
groups of five along the top. Next to 
them are a Pause key. Cursor Pad key, 
Print Screen key, a key with no name or 
purpose, and a Reset key. Note: you 
must hold the Control and Reset keys 
down to emulate the Control-Alternate- 
Delete sequence to reboot the system. 
You also must exert more force to de- 
press the reset key than the other keys 
on the keyboard. 

The KB 5151 is slant adjustable and 
has a ridge running along the top to 

October 1 984 < Creative Computing 



F$r 




Terrapin 
Logo 

Language 



I 



li 




Beware of /mtofe/is. 



There's only one Logo that can lay claim to being the 
original. And that's Terrapin" Logo. 

Terrapin is the original Logo developed at the Massa- 
chusetts Institute of Technology It has been field-tested 
extensively. And it has been in use for over 10 years. 
Today, there are hundreds of thousands of satisfied Terra- 
pin Logo users. That's because over 100,000 copies of 
Terrapin's Logo for Apple and Commodore microcompu- 
ters are in use 

Terrapin Logo is simple. And powerful. So, whether it's 
college or kindergarten, Terrapin Logo is the ideal Logo. 

It's the best value your money can buy, too. For exam- 
ple, Terrapin is available for microcomputer networks, 
such as Corvus Omninet, PRO-NET and VIC-Switch. If 
you don't have access to networking, Terrapin Logo is 



available in money-saving 10- and20disk Terra-Paks 
tor the Apple II family 

Being the original Logo also means we support you. 
Whenever you want, you can speak with our technical 
staff about whatever you want. Plus, we publish frequent 
enhancements to Terrapin Logo, and our award-winning 
documentation. Which means you can be assured that 
Terrapin is always the best Logo available. 

To better understand why the original Logo is the 
best Logo, send for our free Reference Card. Or, if your 
school district has a microcomputer evaluation center, 
call for our special offer. 

Terrapin Logo. It encourages exploration. It encour- 
ages learning. It's fun. And it's the original that keeps 
getting better. 



Terrapin™ 

The Original Logo People 

Terrapin. Inc., 222 Third Street 
Cambridge. MA 02142, (617) 492-8816 

CIRCLE 197 ON READER SERVICE CARD 

There ace Terrapin logo versions for the Apple II family of microcomputers (with 64K RAM) and the Commodore 64 and Plus 4 

Terrapin Logo is a registered trademark ol Terrapin. Inc. Apple is a registered trademark of Apple Computer. Inc. 

Commodore and VIC are registered trademarks of Commodore Electronics, Ltd 



RETAILERS 
TAKE 



NOTE 

Create an educated and 
aware customer with 
CREATIVE COMPUTING! 
Every issue brings your 




customer new ways of using their microcomputer 
PLUS it's a "silent salesperson," helping users select 
new peripherals, software and hardware. If you're 
interested in a low ticket item that's efficient, effec- 
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5380! 

Or write: Ziff-Davis Publishing Company 
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One Park Avenue — 4th Floor 
New York, NY 10016 



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□ SECONDARY EDITION 




oppobtunitimfob Name _ 

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8950 Lurline Ave.. Dept. L87 Scho ° 1 - 

Chateworth, CA 91311 Address 

(818)341-2535 



BUSINESS/PERSONAL ■ 



26 



CIRCLE 170 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



prop up manuals and books. Key Tronic 
thoughtfully includes a 16-page 
operator's manual with the KB 5151. 

Prices 

The Maxi-Switch 8505, 8506, and 
8507 carry a suggested retail price of 
$210. The Titan Data Systems Sure- 
Stroke costs $198. The Colby Key-2 sells 
for $260. The Key Tronic KB 5151 re- 
tails for $255. 

Decisions, Decisions 

All the keyboards we tested have 
advantages and disadvantages. The first 
question is whether you are dissatisfied 
with the IBM PC keyboard and want to 
switch to another. Keyboards are rather 
personal. Once you get used to one, it 
can be traumatic and time- 
consuming to adapt to another. 

Another consideration concerns the 
plastic and cardboard templates that 
come with many of the most popular 
software packages. All of those tem- 
plates are designed to fit around the 10 
function keys on the IBM PC keyboard, 
and they will not fit the function keys as 
laid out on the Colby Key-2, Key Tronic 
KB 5151, or Titan Data Sure-Stroke. 
Only the Maxi-Switch 8505, which 
duplicates the PC keyboard exactly, can 
accommodate these templates. 

Above all, your personal preferences 
should guide you in choosing an replace- 
ment keyboard. Soft touch, hard touch, 
standard layout, LEDs, separate cursor 
control keys — the options are available. 
You need only choose the features you 
want. The PC keyboard is adequate, but 
if you want a replacement keyboard, we 
are sure one of the four we tested — 
Maxi-Switch 8505, Titan Data Systems 
Sure-Stroke, Colby Key-2, or Key 
Tronic KB 5151 — will satisfy your 
needs. ■ 

Manufacturer Addresses 

Maxi-Switch 

Century Research & Marketing Inc. 

10800 Normandale Blvd., Suite 100 

Bloomington, MN 55437 

(612) 884-6363 

Titan Data Systems Inc. 
2625 S. Orange St. 
Santa Ana, CA 92707 
(714) 546-6355 

Colby Computer 

849 Independence Ave. 

Mountain View, CA 94043 

(415)968-1410 

Key Tronic Corp. 
P.O. Box 14687 
Spokane, WA 99214 
(509) 928-8000 

October 1984 • Creative Computing 



this is a terrific package, w newer ror teaming r-avvai ui tw sumwoic 
development." George Blank, Creative Computing, July, 1984 

EXTENDED PASCAL FOR YOUR 

IBM PC, PC jr., APPLE CP/M 

MSDOS, CP/M 86, CCP/M 86 

OR CP/M 80 COMPUTER 

NOW . . . 

WITH 

WINDOWING 

(for IBM PC and Jr.) 

$49.95 






WHY ARE SO MANY BASIC PROGRAMMERS 
NOW USING PASCAL? 



Pascal is structured. It's designed not to tangle. 
What a relief! 

Many of us began programming in Pascal because more than 
once, we'd come smack up against Murphy's first laws of BASIC: 
GOTOS DON'T and GOSUBS NEVER RETURN!! 

You can name variables what you will. Instead of "R". you can 
call your variable "RateOfSpeed". It makes sense. And its modular 
structure allows for the greatest ease of program maintenance. 

Of course, some of the new BASICS have variations of these 
features, but, as anyone who's ever tried to write a game in BASIC 
knows, its an awfully slow language in execution. Programs written 
in Turbo Pascal run many times faster! 

If you're wondering why BASIC has overshadowed Pascal until 
this year, the answer is really quite simple. BASIC, as I'm sure most 
of you know, comes "bundled" with almost every microcomputer. 
It, therefore, became the "default" language. 



In the past, to convert to a usable Pascal was, at 
the very least, an expensive proposition. 

Our predecessors were costly ($300-$900). occupied huge 
amounts of disk space, and most required a separate editor. It's no 
wonder BASIC predominated for so long. 

Therefore, until the introduction of Turbo Pascal, 
this powerful language remained a language of 
professionals. 

Now . . . with the advent of Turbo Pascal . . . Pascal is a language 
for everyone who programs. It comes with a built- in editor, occupies 
only 33K of your precious memory and is menu -driven for true 
programming ease. 

And Turbo Pascal compiles up to 97 times faster than any other 
Pascal compiler around! Yet, it offers all the features and extensions 
you ever dreamed of; even a windowing procedure for the IBM PC! 

If you're running a computer with PCDOS, MSDOS, CP/M, 
CP/M86. or CCP/M86, give yourself a treat . . . TURBO PASCAL! 



it 



As Bruce Webster said in Sottalk IBM in March 1984. 

It is, simply put, the best software deal to come along in a long time. If you 
have the slightest interest in Pascal . . . buy it!" 

To order your copy of Turbo Pascal 2.0 call: 

For VISA and Master Card orders call toll free: 
1 - 800 - 255-8008 In CA: 1 - 800 - 742-1133 

106 ON READER service CARD C'nes open 24 hrs. 7 days a week) 



CHOOSE ONE (please add 
$5.00 for shipping and hand- 
ling for U.S. orders) 

Turbo Pascal 2.0 $49.95 

Turbo Pascal 2.0 with 

8087 support $89.95 
If you have a 16 bit computer 
with the 8087 math chip— your 
number crunching programs 
will execute up to 10x faster! 



Check 

VISA 

Card#: _ 
Exp. date: 



. Money Order 
MasterCard _ 



16 bit 



PC DOS 



Shipped UPS 



: 



BORlAfiD 

INTERNATIONAL 

Borland International 
4113 Scons Valley Drive 
Scons Valley. California 95066 
TELEX: 172373 



My system is: 8 bit 

Operating System: CP/M 80 

CP/M 86 MSDOS — 

Computer: Disk Format: 

Please be sure model number & format are correct. 

NAME: - 

ADDRESS: — 



CITY/STATE/ZIP: 
TELEPHONE: 



California residents add 6% sales las. Outside USA add $15 00 (It 
outside ol USA payment must be by bank dralt payable in the US and in 
US dollars.) Sorry, no COO or Purchase Orders F- 1 2 



Take oar educa 

home. And be a 




America's schools need your help! 



The publishers of America's num- 
ber one educational program 
make you this unusual offer: Take 
any of our educational programs 
home and be a hero once, because 
kids love the fun we bring to 
learning. As a bonus we'll send 
the program of your choice to 
your school, free**, including a 
gift card in your name. You'll help 
meet the acute need for superior 
software in our schools. You'll be 
a hero twice! 

The Scarborough System has a complete 
range of programs to stimulate, challenge and 
help you or your children be more produc- 
tive—including Your Personal Net Worth, that 
makes handling home finances fast and easy, 
Make Millions, an adult business simulation 
game, and Picture Writer,* a program that 
makes drawing on the computer fun. At your 
dealer's now. 



I IIW **IUI ISl/f Willi 

Scarborough Systems, Inc., 25 N. Broadway, Tarrytown, New York 10591 %AW 



ional soft ware 

hero twice! 





MasterType™* Sharpen typ- 
ing skills and increase com- 
puter facility. MasterType is 
the nation's best-selling edu- 
cational program. It's an 
entertaining game that 
teaches typing as it increases 
the keyboard skills needed to 
be at home with a computer. 
And there's a bonus on top of 
this bonus: when we send a 
copy to your local school, at 
your request, your child will 
become even more proficient 
with a computer. 



Run for the Money™ Learn 
to pursue profits in the real 
world by escaping from an 
alien planet. Here s an excit- 
ingly different, action-packed 
game of business strategy for 
two players. Your children 
will have fun as they learn a 
lot about business. 



MasterType 
Phi Beta Filar 




PatternMaker.™ An amazing 
software program. It's geom- 
etry. It's art. It's great fun. Kids 
can build dazzling patterns 
and learn a lot. PatternMaker 
builds a foundation that can 
be applied to many profes- 
sions and crafts. It challenges 
creativity and effectively 
teaches symmetry, color and 
design, and it's just as much 
fun for grown-ups, too. 



Our programs are available for: IBM-PC/ 
PCjr, Apple II family, Commodore 64, Atari. 



C^B You 'II grow with us. 
i#rf/>Ht 





Phi Beta Filer™* New 

for children and adults. Orga- 
nizes lists of addresses, dates, 
insurance and medical rec- 
ords, hobbies and collec- 
tions — even school work — 
structures quizzes on any 
subject, quickly and easily. 
(Not available for Atari.) 



Songwriter™* Kids and adults 
will love making music at the 
computer. Just press a key to lis- 
ten, press a key to record, and 
you've started your own compo- 
sition. It's a fun way to learn 
about music. And Songwriter 
can be played through your 
stereo or computer. 



•National Education Association 
Teacher Certified Software 



CIRCLE 187 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Yes! I want to software a school! 



CC10/84 



"Enclosed is the completed warranty card 
and sales receipt for the purchase of a 
Scarborough product. I am enclosing my 
check for $3.50 to cover handling, ship- 
ping and postage required to send a free 
copy of a Scarborough program to the 
school listed below. A gift card with my 
name will be enclosed. 




Your Name (for gift card). 

Name of Principal 

Name of School 



Address (school address only). 
City State 



.Zip. 



Software will be sent only to verifiable school addresses. 

Offer Expires Dec. 15. 1985 

Check computer used in school: 

LI Comm. 64 fj Atari O Apple II family [" I IBM 

Check product to be sent to school: 

D MasterType LI Songwriter □ Phi Beta Filer 

□ PatternMaker U] PictureWritert D Run for the Money 

• Apple only. 

Make check payable and mail to: 

Scarborough Systems, 25 N. Broadway, Tarrytown, N.Y 10591 



PERSONAL 



Reinventing the Wheel 



■ i 

• 



Apple lie 
Revealed 



The Apple He is like no other Apple 
computer ever introduced, and yet it is 
virtually an Apple He work-alike. The 
design of the He represents a change of 
philosophy for Apple. Gone are the 
expansion slots that hardware hackers 
loved. In fact, you can't even open the 
He easily. Apple has built a computer 
that is to be used as an applicance — like 
a telephone or a tape recorder. 

The He is "aimed primarily at the 
consumer market, "asserts John Sculley, 
President and CEO of Apple Computer. 
Will the lie find a place in every home? 
There is no doubt in Apple's mind that 
the He will be their highest volume 
product ever. Will you be their next cus- 
tomer? Come, let's take a closer look so 
you can decide. 

Package 

The Apple He comes complete in one 
large box. For your hard-earned $1295, 
you receive a 128K. Apple He with a 
built-in 140K disk drive, three instruc- 
tion manuals, an external power supply, 
a set of five tutorial disks, and cables and 
adapters to hook the computer to a tele- 
vision set. 

Physically the Apple He is one of the 
most appealing machines on the market. 

30 




HARDWARE 
EVALUATION 



Owen Linzmayer 



The sleek 12" x 11.5" x 2.5" case was 
developed by Hart mut Esslinger of Frog 
Design, the West German firm best 
known for designing the Sony Walkman. 
The ivory color, rounded edges, and 
high-performance look of the He have 
been dubbed the "Snow White" look 
and will be featured in all new Apple 
products. It is the look of the 80's, the 
Pepsi Generation, and you had better get 
used to it. You will be seeing a lot of it in 
years to come. 

Keyboard 

The layout of the Apple lie keyboard 
is identical to that of the He, with the 
exception of the reset key. Located to 
the right of the DELETE key on the He, 
reset is found above the esc key and is 
recessed into the case of the He. Directly 
to the right of the reset key is the 
80/40 switch which selects the number 
of columns of text to be displayed on the 



screen. The number of columns can also 
be selected by typing esc-4 or esc-8, 
though software can override the setting 
of the switch. 

The keyboard is arranged in the popu- 
lar QWERTY (Sholes) fashion but by 
pressing the keyboard switch, located to 
the right of the 80/40 switch, you can 
select the Dvorak layout which offers a 
much more efficient placing of keys. Af- 
ter switching to the Dvorak mode, you 
can pull up the keys and reinstall them 
according to the Dvorak layout. Apple 
plans to offer a set of Dvorak keycaps 
that will fit snugly over the existing keys 
and eliminate this shuffling. 

The 63 keys can produce all 1 28 stan- 
dard ASCII characters, which include 
upper- and lowercase alphanumerics, as 
well as 32 special graphics characters 
called Mousetext. The full-stroke key- 
board offers good tactile feedback and 
an audible click. In addition, the D and 
K keycaps have small bumps on them to 
aid touch typists in correctly positioning 
their fingers on the home row. 

Motherboard 

The Apple lie is testimony to the fact 
that you can re-invent the wheel and do 
a much better job the second time 

October 1984 • Creative Computing 



Not wifdrti 

Its only business is managing your home finances. 

No program does it more quickly, more easily, more directly. 



Your Personal Net Worth systematizes 
the management of your household income, 
expenses, credit cards and check books — 
using methods tested for accuracy by Touche 
Ross, one of the nation's leading accounting 
firms. 

Your Personal Net Worth puts your com- 
puter to work, keeps your records straight, in- 
cluding your personal inventory of valuables 
and stock portfolio, tells you where and how 
you're spending your money or if you're mak- 
ing a shambles of your budget. And does it' all 



in less time than it takes you to balance your 
checkbook. 

Nothing else — no other program at twice 
the price — makes handling your personal 
money matters simpler, faster and more direct 
than Your Personal Net Worth. 

You'll find it at your favorite software 
retailer in the silver box with the real 
silver dollar on the front. It could be the 
single most valuable purchase you'll 
ever make. 




Record all banking and 
any credit card trans- 
actions, reconcile bank 
statements instantly (up 
to 10 separate bank ac- 
counts can be handled), 
— print checks, too. 



Set up a budget (as many 
as 350 categories) — and 
then compare your actual 
income and expenses to 
the budget. 



return time. 



Display or print every 
financial report you'll 
ever need. 




"^crton^ 








Record stock, bond and 
other investment trans- 
actions. Inventory 
household valuables, 
collectibles and 
important papers for 
insurance and other 
purposes. 



Your Personal Net Worth 
works fast because it's in 
machine language. Docu- 
mentation in plain English 
is referenced for easy 
use. "Help" functions on 
screen at all times. 



Available for: 



IBM-PC XT/PCjr (128K) 
Apple II * He lie (64K) 
Commodore 64 
Atari (48K) 
The Program comes 
with two disks, one of 
which has accounts al- 
ready set up for entry. 
However, only one disk 
drive is necessary. 



■ ■■ ^P«% ■ ■ _■ m You'll grow with um. 

I If %0 t#lUI ■#«/! WWII ttf/iM Crllfe 

D 1984. Scarborouqh Systems, Inc., 25 N. Broadway, Tarrytown, NY 10591 ^0 M 



CIRCLE 182 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



PERSONAL 






I^^^^B 


1 




4 - ' * 






^^^^^j^^T^I ;.j| 


1 



M protective plastic layer makes this a "drool-proof" keyboard. The He motherboard: an engineering masterpiece. 



around. Thanks to large scale integra- 
tion (LSI), the motherboard of the He is 
a masterpiece of engineering — 40 cus- 
tom integrated circuits do the work of 
well over 100 standard chips. For exam- 
ple, the Integrated Woz Machine (IWM) 
is a single chip that is equivalent to an 
entire Apple Disk II controller card. 

Only five chips are mounted in sock- 
ets; the rest are soldered directly to the 
motherboard. This reduces costs tremen- 
dously and improves reliability. It also 
reinforces Apple's contention that the 
He isn't a machine for people who want 
to hack around with the hardware. 

The heart of the Apple He is an 8-bit 
65C02 microprocessor running at 1.02 
MHz. The C stands for Complementary 



Metal-Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) 
and means that the CPU draws signifi- 
cantly less power than a standard 6502 
and, hence, produces less heat. These are 
important characteristics for a portable 
computer. The 65C02 is an enhanced 
version of the 6502 that has been the 
mainstay of the Apple II line, yet this 
new chip performs exactly the same 
when running the Ahl Benchmark Test. 
The improvements include 27 additional 
instructions which speed up graphics 
and allow for more efficient number 
crunching. These improvements may 
cause some compatibility problems 
(more on this later). 

The He boasts 128K of on-board 
RAM which is equivalent to a He with 



an Extended 80-Column Card installed 
in slot 3. Since the 65C02 has an address 
range of only 64K, the second 64K of 
RAM is accessed via a process called 
bank-switching. According to Apple, the 
He is not expandable beyond 128K of 
RAM, but third-party developers have 
been known to do some surprising things 
with Apple hardware. I wouldn't bet 
against memory upgrades just yet. The 
lie has 16K of ROM which includes the 
Applesoft Basic interpreter, the system 
monitor, and 80-column firmware less 
the diagnostics firmware of the He. 

Disk Drive 

Built into the right hand side of the He 
case is a half-height, 5.25", single-sided 







I 



The computer monitor so ingenious, 



If you're torn between buying a dedicated monitor and making do with your 
regular TV there's a smarter alternative The General Electric Monitor/TV 

First and foremost, it's a computer monitor. 

Compatible with all major computer brands, it combines these advanced 
features to sharpen text and graphics and deliver a display that's easy-on-the-eyes: 
Direct and split video inputs; 320-line resolution via a comb filter; plus a computer 
grade, 5mm-pitch Neovision" picture system. 

for the name of your nearest dealer, call The GE Answer Centef"1nformation Service. 1-800-626-2000 



PERSONAL 




floppy disk drive. This drive has a 140K 
formatted storage capacity, of which 
124K is available with DOS 3.3, and 
137K is available for Pascal and 
ProDOS users. Thanks to the flexibility 
of ProDOS, third-party external drives 
may offer storage capacity in excess of 
140K. 

The built-in drive is treated as if it 
were drive 1, in slot 6 of a He. The 
optional external Apple drive ($329) is 
referenced as drive 2, slot 6. Apparently 
you will never be able to run more than 
two floppy disk drives on an Apple He, 
but if it is more on-line storage that you 
desire. Quark Inc. of Denver has 
announced a 10Mb Winchester hard 
disk drive for the He called the QC10. 
The 19-pin D-type connector for the sec- 
ond drive on the back of the He contains 
most of the pinouts to the internal bus, 
so if memory expansion units or CP/M 
modifications are ever designed, they 
will probably plug in here. 

Serial Ports 

The lie has two built-in serial ports 
located on the back of the unit. These 
ports are analogous to two Super Serial 
cards for the He. The 5-pin DIN serial 
connectors are keyed and labeled with 
icons to eliminate the possibility of 
connecting a cable incorrectly. Serial 



port 1 is to be used primarily for output 
to printers and plotters. You are limited 
to using only serial printers unless you 
purchase a serial-parallel adapter unit, 
several of which are already on the mar- 
ket with prices ranging from $129-5199. 
The second serial port is devoted to 
communications using an optional 
modem. 

You may configure the ports to your 
liking using the system utility disk sup- 
plied with the He. Parameters such as 
word length, bit rate (baud), parity, echo 
output, linefeed, carriage return, and 



line length are user-definable. Along 
with the printer and modem presets, 
your custom configurations can be saved 
to and recalled from disk, thus eliminat- 
ing repetitious setting of parameters. 

The most commonly voiced complaint 
concerning the Apple He is the lack of 
expansion slots, which some people take 
to mean a lack of expandability. Not so. 
There are many devices that may be at- 
tached directly to the serial ports. These 
include port extenders, home control- 
lers, print buffers, real-time clocks, mu- 
sic systems, sound effects generators, 






HARDWARE 
PROFILE 



Product: Apple He 

Type: Desktop/portable 

CPU: 65C02 

RAM: 128K/128K 

ROM: 16K 

Type of Keyboard: 63-key half-stroke 

Text Resolution: 80 x 24 

Graphics Resolution: 560 x 192 

Number of Colors: 16 



Sound Capability: Internal speaker 
with volume control 

Ports: Two serial, second drive, 

video expansion, hand 

controls/ mouse 
Dimensions: 2.25" x 11.5" x 12" 
Documentation: Four tutorial disks 

and manuals for neophytes 
Summary: The home computer of the 

Pepsi generation. 

Manufacturer: 

Apple Computer, Inc. 
20525 Mariani Ave. 
Cupertino, CA 95014 
(408)996-1010 





it even runs this kind of program. 

Secondly, it's a first class TV. 

Flick a switch and these same advanced electronics give you an ^""^^^ 
outstanding TV with a high-contrast picture and rich, true colors. g.fl 0\ 

And you get all this for about the same price as an ordinary M WjJL . 

monitor. Another piece of ingenuity we thought youd appreciate. \ 

We bring good things to life. 



^ 



Simulated Monitc 



CIRCLE 143 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



PERSONAL 



and speech synthesizers (see sidebar). 

The lack of slots is really a blessing in 
disguise. It makes the He a "closed sys- 
tem." This is the kind of environment 
for which software developers like to 
program, since they don't have to worry 
about all the different cards and hard- 
ware kits that you may or may not have 
in your computer. With a closed system, 
if the program runs correctly on one He, 
it runs correctly on every lie. I antici- 
pate that software firms will flock to the 
lie. This machine is a programmer's 
dream — a powerful closed system with a 
wide range of special features. 

Video Output 

There are two video output connec- 
tors on the back of the He, an RCA 
phono jack and a 1 5-pin D-type connec- 
tor. Using the supplied radio frequency 
(RF) modulator and switch box, you can 
use your television set as a display. The 
modulator, as well as external PAL and 
SECAM video adapters for overseas use, 
get their signals from the video expan- 
sion connector. 

If you want to take advantage of 80- 
column text or double high-resolution 
graphics, you will want a composite 
video monitor. The RCA jack provides 
the NTSC signal required by both color 
and monochrome composite monitors. 
Monochrome monitors are best for crisp 
displays of alphanumeric information, 
but don't do justice to color graphics. 
The reverse is true for color monitors. 

If you want both 80-column text and 
color graphics, you should get a red- 
green-blue (RGB) monitor. These are 
expensive ($600 + ), but the superb pic- 
ture quality justifies the cost. In addi- 
tion to the monitor itself, you will need 
to purchase an RGB adapter for the 
Apple He for about $200. 

Perhaps one of the most desirable 
peripherals for the He is the flat-panel 
liquid crystal display (LCD). Weighing 



in at 2.5 lbs and measuring a trim 1 1.5" 
x 6* x 1.5", the display has a resolution 
of 560 x 192 bit-mapped pixels. Since 
each text character is composed on a 7 x 
8 matrix, the LCP panel is capable of 
displaying a full 80 columns by 24 rows 
of normal, inverse, flashing, and Mouse- 
text characters. The flat-panel display 
also has full graphics capabilities, in- 
cluding the much touted double high- 



This machine is a 

programmer's 

dream — a powerful 

closed system with a 

wide range of special 

features. 



resolution graphics. All but the fastest 
and most detailed animated graphics 
will be within the capabilities of the flat- 
panel display. Unfortunately, the pro- 
jected lofty $600 pricetag makes the 
LCD panel a peripheral for the few 
rather than the masses. 

Controller Port 

Looking at the rear of the He, the 
controller port is located at the far left. 
This 9-pin D-type connector is where 
hand controllers plug into the He. Joy- 
sticks designed to use the 9-pin control- 
ler port of the He are 100% compatible 
with the lie, but controllers that connect 
to the internal 16-pin game socket can- 
not be used without a special adapter. 

Other peripherals that use the control- 
ler port are mice, paddles, light pens, 
and port extenders. As software pro- 
grammers begin to take full advantage of 
the lie Mousetext features, a mouse may 
become a necessity. Packaged with the 



$99 AppleMouse lie is MousePaint, Bill 
Budge's adaptation of the incredible 
Macintosh drawing program, MacPaint. 
Few programs currently on the market 
allow mouse input, but you should ex- 
pect to see many new releases that do. 

Instead of a traditional X-Y pointing 
device, the mouse can be used as a pad- 
dle controller if your Basic program uses 
PDi. functions to read the paddles. To 
use the mouse instead of the paddle, 
boot DOS 3.3, type PR#4 to turn on 
the mouse, then type ctri.-A to initial- 
ize it, and finally, type PR#0 to restore 
output to the screen. 

Audio Output 

The Apple lie has an internally 
mounted l 3 / 8 " speaker located on the 
bottom front of the unit. This speaker is 
slightly smaller than those used in the 
Apple II line to date, but it provides a 
comparable response. Luckily, there is a 
volume control dial on the lefthand side 
of the lie, along with a two-channel, 
monaural, mini-phone jack to accom- 
modate headphones. When the head- 
phones are plugged in, the internal 
speaker is disconnected. 

Power Supply 

One of the most interesting things 
about the lie is that it actually has two 
power supplies: one internal and one 
external. The 10 lb. external supply is 
referred to as the floor board unit and 
comes with a 12' cord. This unit draws a 
negligible amount of power even when 
the lie is turned off, and due to its large 
size, it dissipates heat rather well. 

The floor board unit converts 1 10V 
AC from a wall outlet to 1 5V DC which 
can be used by the internal power sup- 
ply. The fact that the computer itself 
runs on 15V DC allows the He to be 
powered from a car cigarette lighter 
socket or equivalent power source. If 
you are on the run, Discwasher sells 




The Apple lie replete with its family of peripherals. 
34 



October 1984 • Creative Computing 







5* *— 






« 



)//• 



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/##^l ' *»Forlt 

^$&&S* WeeklyReader 

^% FamilylSaftwaK 

^9j~ A division of Xerox Education Publications 

*fc c Middlctown.CT 06457 



* 9 9 * $ 




PERSONAL 



Cari, a $250 carrying case with a built-in 
battery pack that provides three to five 
hours of uninterrupted use without a 
charge. Equipped with Cari and the flat- 
panel LCD display, the lie becomes a 
very powerful portable computer. 

Documentation 

Three manuals arc supplied with the 
Apple lie. They are probably the best 
computer manuals ever written —for 
beginners. "Setting Up Your Apple He" 
explains simply and thoroughly how to 
get your computer out of its box and 
into operation. "Apple Presents the Ap- 
ple He" is a 144-page spiral-bound inter- 
active introduction to the He. It is to be 
used in conjunction with the four tu- 
torial disks supplied with the system, 
though it can stand alone if need be. 

"Systems Utilities" is a manual that 
describes the various functions and 
parameters of the powerful utilities disk 
included with the computer. The system 
utilities disk is ProDOS-based, yet the 
disk management commands contained 
therein allow it to read Pascal and DOS 
3.3 disks. 

Unfortunately for hackers and 
advanced users, detailed descriptions of 
Applesoft Basic, DOS references, system 
information, and technical specifications 
are not supplied with the lie system. 
Several independent publishers have 
released He books, but beware, most of 
these do little more than reiterate the 



Apple manuals and press releases. 

Compatibility 

One of the strongest selling points of 
the He is that it is compatible with the 
more than 10,000 Apple software pro- 
grams already on the market. There are, 
however, many packages that are not 
fully compatible. The reasons for 
incompatibility vary. What follows 



Apple Computer plans 

to sell 500,000 lie's 

in 1984 alone. 



is a description of the most common 
problems. 

Software that makes calls to the alter- 
nate inverse character set in ROM will 
boot correctly, but will display strange 
Mousetext characters instead of the 
intended text. 

If an Apple disk refuses to boot on a 
He, but works fine on other II comput- 
ers, it probably has a special protection 
scheme common on entertainment pack- 
ages. Spiral, synchronous, and half-track- 
ing protection techniques rely on certain 
Apple Disk II drive idiosyncrasies that 
are not present in the He drives. 

Any software that simply "hangs" in 
operation probably makes use of pre- 



Apple lie-Specific Peripherals 



Brady Communications Co., Inc. 

Bowie, MD 20715 

(800) 638-0220 

Apple He User Guide $14.95 

Chalk Board, Inc. 
3772 Pleasantdale Rd. 
Atlanta. GA 30340 
PowerPad $149 

Discwasher 

1407 N. Providence Rd. 

P.O. Box 6021 

Columbia, MO 65205 

(314)449-0941 

Cari carrying case with 

battery pack $249.95 

Calling Four II $79 

Serial-Parallel interface $129 

Howard W. Sams & Co., Inc. 

4300 W. 62nd St. 

P.O. Box 7092 

Indianapolis, IN 46206 

(800) 428-SAMS 

Introducing the Apple He $12.95 



Koala Technologies 

(800) KOA-BEAR 

Koala Pad $125 

Gibson Light Pen System $249 

Pocket Books 

Going Places With the New Apple lie 

$3.95 

Prometheus Products, Inc. 

45277 Fremont Blvd. 

Fremont, CA 94538 

(415)490-2370 

Versabox serial-parallel interface $199 

Quark 

2525 W. Evans, Suite 220 

Denver, CO 80219 

(303)934-2211 

OC10 hard disk drive less than $2500 

So. Calif. Research Group 

P.O. Box 2231 -A 

Goleta, CA93118 

(800)635-8310 

9-16 Game Port Adapter $14.95 



viously unused memory locations that 
were reserved for Apple's future use. 
Programs that rely upon 80-column 
boards manufactured by third-party ven- 
dors will not work correctly either. 

All of these problems can be solved by 
rewriting the code, at which time the 
software manufacturers can take advan- 
tage of special He features such as 80/40 
columns, 128K RAM, double high- 
resolution graphics, and mouse technol- 
ogy. I suspect that any existing incom- 
patibilities will be reconciled shortly and 
that in the future all Apple software in- 
troduced will pay special attention to the 
He. As it stands, 80 to 95% of all Apple 
programs currently available work on 
the lie, but the only way to make sure 
that the program you want functions 
correctly is to try it yourself at your lo- 
cal Apple dealer. 

Apple Computer plans to sell 500,000 
He's in 1984 alone. Will they make it? 
Who knows. One thing is for sure: they 
can count on my order. Although we at 
Creative Computing review several 
computers a month, I was so impressed 
with the lie that I went out and bought 
one for myself. If you are looking for an 
Apple-compatible machine and are not 
too concerned with the fact that the He 
is slotless, this is the computer for you. 
If, however, you really want expansion 
slots, pick up a He. Either way, you 
can't lose. H 

CIRCLE 402 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Street Electronics 
1 140 Mark Ave. 
Carpinteria, CA 93013 
(805) 684-4593 
The Cricket $179.95 

Sweet Micro Systems 
50 Freeway Dr. 
Cranston, RI 02920 
(800) 341-8001 
Mockingboard D $195 

TG Products 

1 104 Summit Ave. 

Piano, TX 75074 

(214)424-8468 

Apple II Joystick $44.95 

Video-7 Inc. 

12340 S. Saratoga/Sunnyvale Rd. 

Suite 1 

Sunnyvale, CA 95070 

(408) 725-1433 

He RGB Interface $195 

Wico 

6400 W. Gross PI. Rd. 
Niles, IL 60648 
(800) 323-4014 
Analog Joystick $49.95 



October 1 984 e Creative Computing 



Instant fun. 




Now everyone 
can make music. 



Skip the years of piano lessons. 
Months of struggling to read sheet 
music— forget it! Music should be 
easy, and as fun to make as it is to 
listen to. Now, with some help 
from your Apple, it is! 

Just pop an ALF Music Card 
into your Apple, and plug the 
card's cable into your stereo 
system. Boot the disk, and WOW! 
Incredible music leaps from your 
speakers— you've never heard 
music like this out of a computer. 
Remember 2- or 3-note chords 
coming from that tiny speaker in 
your Apple, like the sound from 
an old pay phone? Now imagine 
9-note chords, hi-fi digital sound, 



and ADSR-timbres just like Moog 
used to make— all dancing out of 
your system in glorious stereo! 
Rapture! Ecstasy!! 

But now the reed fun begins. Use 
the Music Entry program to put in 
your own songs. Just match the 
symbols in the sheet music with 
the ones on the screen. Or make 
up your own songs— each note is 
played as you put it in. Changing 
notes, inserting new notes, and 
deleting extras is a breeze. Editing 
is so fast and easy you'll be adding 
frills just for kicks. 

The Music Card goes beyond 
having a good time. Even profes- 
sional musicians love its advanced 
abilities. Change volume, timbre, 
and tempo at any point in the 
music. Triplets, quintuplets, 
sixty-fourtb notes and faster? No 
problem. Rounds, repeats, D.C. 



al Fine, al Segno, al Segno e poi 
la Coda . . . any repetition you can 
imagine is simple. Transposition in 
quarter-steps. Full ADSR envelopes. 
The Music Card does it all. 




So pour some music in your Apple. 
$169 at your Apple dealer, or 
call 1-800-321-4668 (in Colorado, 
1-303-234-0871). And start having 
fun. Instantly! 



The Music Card model MCI pIurs in your Apple «. "+. "«. <* III. Game paddles required for the // and //+ . recommended for rhe He. "Apple" i- 1 rrademark i * A rr lo ( J.mpurer 



ALF 



ALF Products Inc. 1315F Nelson St. Denver, CO 80215 Telex: .4991 B24 



Introducing the most powerful 



The now IBM 
Personal Computer AT. 



Hold oil to your hat. 

TIk' new IBM Personal Computer AT (for 
AdvaiK-ed ItcliiK ili >gy I is based on the advanced 
H028o l()-hit microprooeBBor. This remarkable 
computer will run man) of the programs written 
for the IBM IH ;. up to three times faster. Youll be 
able to recalculate large spreadsheets in seconds 
and retrieve files in a flash. 

Its got the power (and price) to surprise you. 
In many ways. 



( compatibility, expandability, 
networking too. 



With the IBM Disk Operating System, the IBM 
Personal Computer AT can use many programs 
from the fastest -growing library in the pei-sonal 
computer software indust ry. 

The IBM Personal Computer \T is also available 
with up to 3 million bytes of user memory to run 
multiuser, multitasking operating systems such 
as XENIX™*. Volume upon volume of information is 
available at your fingertips. You can customize 
your system to store up to 20,000 pages of infor- 
mation at one time. \nd its keyboard helps you us*' 
all of this computing power more easily. 

This new member of the IBM It: Family is a 
powerful stand-alone computer that can also be 
both the primary fik' server and a station on your 



network. With the new IBM PC Network (which is 

bo easy to conned you can do it yourself |L the 

i 

IBM Personal Computer AT Specifications 



User Memory 
256KB 3MB* 
Microprocessor 

16/24 bit 80286* 

Real and protected modes* 

Auxiliary Memory 

1.2MB and 360KB diskette 

drives* 
20MB fixed disk drive* 
41.2MB maximum auxiliary 

memory* 
Keyboard 

Enlarged enter and shift keys 
84 keys 
10-foot cord* 
Caps lock, num lock and 

lock indicators 
Display Screen 
IBM Monochrome and Color 

Displays 
Operating Systems 
DOS 3 0. XFNIX* 



Diagnostics 

Power on self testing* 

Parity checking* 

CMOS configuration table with 

battery backup* 
Languages 
BASIC. Pascal. FORTRAN. 

Macro Assembler. COBOL. APL 



Supports attachment ol i 

and parallel dev< 
Permanent Memory 
(ROM) 64KB 

Clock/calendar wilh battery* 
Color/Graphics 
Text mode 
Graphics nt 
Communications 
RS 232 
Networking 
High [j. 

station on the IBM PC N> ' 



•Advanced Features for Personal Computers 

IBM Personal Computer AT can share information 

with IBM It is. PC/XTsand IBM Portable Pi s. 

Gel a hands-on. hate-off 
demonstration. 

The new IBM Personal Computer VI hits the 
power: compatibility and expandability man) IT 
users need, at a very appealing price. 

For more information contact \our authorized 
IBM \\. dealer. IBM Product < renter or IBM 
marketing representative. For a store near vou 
call I-K00- 147- I7(K». In Alaska or Hawaii call 
1-»<M>-147-<>K<)0. ==== = 



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CIRCLE 150 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



EDUCATION 



Acorn 



A Tall Oak in Education 



You may have heard it said that big 
oaks from little acorns grow. In the case 
of the Acorn microcomputer, the proverb 
is most certainly true. The Acorn has al- 
ready grown into a mighty oak on the far 
side of the Atlantic, where it is the most 
popular educational machine in the United 
Kingdom. 

Certainly having been chosen as the 
official micro of the BBC (British Broad- 
casting System) helped it achieve this status. 
But it was not the fact of having been 
chosen that made the Acorn grow. It was 
the quality of the Acorn that caused it to 
be chosen. Follow? 

When you stop to think that the Acorn 
computer has been in production abroad 
since 1981, you might think to credit the 
excellence of its design. Though the original 
Apple II was shipped with more or less 
the same design for a record-setting seven 
years, it is out of production now. The 
Acorn is still selling well today with an 
original design dating from 1981. No other 
machine can make that impressive claim. 

Why? Well, it isn't enough just to say 
the designers had foresight or that their 
commitment to quality was admirable, 
though both of those statements are indeed 
true. The heart of the matter is that the 
Acorn was designed with a calculated, 
highly specific goal in mind: to be an 
educational tool. On that account 
it succeeds masterfully. 

The Acorn is.in fact. built 
like an oak. It is designed 
to withstand "institu- 
tional" punishment, 
to offer ease of 
use without 




HARDWARE 
EVALUATION 



John J. Anderson 



sacrificing the goal of furthering computer 
literacy, and to present powerful ROM 
software tools to the beginning 
programmer. 



Quick Tour of the Hardware 

The Acorn is built around a 6502 
processor with 32K of RAM and 32K of 
ROM. In ROM you'll find a variation of 
Microsoft Basic and a powerful machine 
code assembler, along with other routines. 

Graphics are superlative, with an RGB 
interface standard (the Acorn was among 
the first RGB color micros). It sports eight 
graphics modes: 16 simultaneous colors 
in 256 x 160 pixel resolution and 840 x 
256 pixel resolution in two colors. Graphics 



40 




LITTLE SPIRIT 
CAN GIVE YOU 
EXTRAORDINARY 

PRINTING POWER. 




Spirit's the microprinter that lets you do more things 
yourself. And do each of them letter perfect. 
It prints standard, bold, expanded and condensed type 
faces. Even italics. And finely etched graphics. All because 
every impression has a crisp, square edge to it for unmistakable 
clarity. 

That's the power to look perfect in print. 
And a power that operates almost without sound. The 
Quietpak option smothers printer noise. So Spirit rushes through work with barely a whisper. 

There's also the power to manage paper. Variable width tractors adjust for narrow jobs like- 
labels. Or wider jobs like correspondence. All of which are handed to you immediately thanks to 
Spirit's Quick Tear edge. 

When you can have your own personal microprinter 
that does so much for so little, aren't you powerless not 
to act? 

For more information and the name of your nearest 
dealer, call toll-free: 800-447-4700. In Illinois, 800-322-4400. 



In CMMdl, cjII 417-461-97W "ManufcK Hirer's upwd UJ ICUl pelec *ith (MM ka 

CIRCLE 136 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



MANNESMANN 
TALLY 



EDUCATION h 



vm -,t RGB R.M21 Cmwim Analog; ui Ecca»t 

VWm -u! 




Figure 1. 



_L 



=1 rac= 

2$ T H J 



(JMT mput/ouipw IMHf bus 



1 



Figure 2. 




o o o 

mm* i 

IJl.MT 



housekeeping is handled by a custom LSI 
chip. 

Sound capabilities include four channels: 
three for tones and one for noise. Sound 
quality rivals the Apple II series, with a 
small speaker internal to the machine. In 
fact many things about the Acorn will 
remind you of the Apple II, including its 
case. The designers of the Acorn cer- 
tainly used the Apple as at least a partial 
prototype. 

As opposed to the Apple, however, the 
Acorn presents a number of interfaces 
standard and has no need for internal 
card slots. Disk interface, parallel printer 
port, three types of video output (RF mod, 
composite, and RGB), RS-423 serial, and 
Econet interface are all standard on the 



HARDWARE 
PROFILE 



Product: Acom 
Type: Microcomputer 
CPU: 6502 
RAM: 16/32K 
ROM: 32K 

Type of Keyboard: 74-key full-stroke 

QWERTY, 10 function keys 
Text Resolution: To 80 x 24 
Graphics Resolution: To 840 x 256 
Number of Colors: 16 

Sound Capability: 4 channel— 3 tone, 
1 noise 

Ports: Cassette, parallel printer, 
RS-423, Econet, User I/O. twin 
custom busses. 

Documentation: Excellent 

Summary: As a machine designed for 
schools and to be used for edu- 
cation at home, the Acom 
succeeds magnificently. 

Manufacturer: 

Acorn Computers Corp. 
400 Unicorn Park Dr. 
Woburn, MA 01801 
(617)935-1190 



42 



Figure 3. 

Acorn. See Figures 1 and 2. 

Also standard equipment are a ROM 
cartridge slot, a 1MHz bus, and another 
bus dubbed the "Tube." This bus makes 
the addition of a coprocessor possible— 
putting the Acorn under control of a Z 80 
running CP/M, for example. The idea is 
that the CPU of the Acorn should never 
really go out of date, as long as the Tube 
is around. Acorn is planning a 68000 co- 
processor option now, we have heard. 

Econet is a communications networking 
system that allows up to 254 machines to 
be linked using standard four-wire tele- 
phone cable. This low-cost capability is 
of great interest to educators. 

The keyboard layout of the machine is 
standard QWERTY, though a few of the 
keys are placed eccentrically (Figure 3). 
One of the most annoying placements I 
have encountered is the backspace key 
on the lower right, and that is exactly 
where it appears on the Acorn. The layout 
is non-Selectric, placing the quote as a 
SHIFT-2 and the apostrophe as SHIFT-7. 
It takes a bit of getting used to, unless it is 
what you have been using. There are nine 
programmable function keys across the 
top of the machine. 

As I mentioned earlier, the Acorn is 
built to withstand the abuse of the class- 
room. I cannot recall having seen a sturdier 
computer. If you are purchasing micros 
for elementary school use, your machines 
will be subject to extremes of torture. 
The Aaorn is ready to stand up to that for 
years. 

Quick Tour of Basic 

Why Basic in the Acorn, you ask? Why 
not Logo or Comal? Well, we must re- 
member that the Acorn was originally de- 
signed back in 1981. Even then it was 
debated whether Basic was the best be- 
ginner's language, and there was much 
disagreement in British academic circles. 
Basic finally won out, probably because it 
was already in development for the 
machine (originally called the Atom) when 
the BBC chose to back it. 

Acom Basic is much like Microsoft Basic, 
with a few notable differences. Those 
differences will not mean much to students 
learning Basic for the first time, but they 



make transporting programs somewhat 
difficult. On the other hand. Acom Basic 
has some neat special commands, like 
REPEAT...UNTIL and a host of dedicated 
graphics and sound commands. The com- 
mand ENVELOPE, for example, allows 
you to define the shapes of sound envelopes 
for the three tone voices available. 

Other Software 

Acom software developed on these 
shores was scant up until the beginning of 
1984, when many packages began to 
appear. Acom has set up a qualified review 
panel to ensure that Acom educational 
packages will conform to a high standard 
of quality. We made a random sampling 
of six Acom/Shiva math packages, along 
with educational packages from Krell and 
Acom itself, and found them quite satis- 
factory. Acom tells us that hundreds of 
packages, including a powerful version of 
Logo, are now available. 

Documentation 

But the Acom is never a better learning 
machine than when it is teaching computer 
literacy. The two-volume User's Guide 
accompanying the machine is among the 
best Basic tutorials available. It is clear, 
unpatronizing, well-paced, thorough, and 
above all, logically consistent. If you want 
to leam Basic, or have a youngster who 
wants to, the Systems User Guide would 
be a very good place to start. 

Bottom Line 

Things change very swiftly in the world 
of micros, and I have taken to calling six 
months a generation. The Acom has been 
around for seven micro generations now 
and is still going strong. 

I would have liked to have seen the in- 
troduction of the machine to the U.S. 
long before the beginning of this year— it 
might have pre-empted the inappropriate 
purchase of many machines less suited to 
use in education. Now that the Acom is 
here, it has already found a niche among 
smart educational buyers. 

The Acom lists for $999 retail with 
built-in cassette storage port. A 5.25" disk 
drive unit with controller lists for $599. ■ 

CIRCLE 403 ON READER SERVICE CARD 

October 1984 ■ Creative Computing 



BIG FOUR 

NEW 128K —MEGA BYTE DUAL DISK DRIVE-80 COLUMN 

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CIRCLE 177 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



lead What Educators Are 

New Courseware 



\ 










aying about j_. 
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learned $ 



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Educators all across the country developing 
their own courses are using Radio Shack's 
AUTHOR I courseware development 
system— a screen-oriented authoring system 
that lets educators with no programming 
knowledge develop software for use in any 
subject or grade level. 

Get the Courseware You Really Need. With 
AUTHOR I, teachers become actively involved 
in curriculum development. Courseware can 
be designed with specific needs and goals 
in mind. 

No Obligation Seminar. Teachers, administra- 
tors and counselors can participate in a com- 
plimentary 8-hour seminar at your local Radio 
Shack Computer Center. AUTHOR I is simple 
to use, with full-screen editing, graphics, 
branching and many options Call your local 
Radio Shack Computer Center or contact your 
Regional Education Coordinator for more 
details. 

We'll Show You How. We ve already demon- 
strated the effectiveness of AUTHOR I to Dr 
Charles S. Cline and Louise Fulgham of Duval 
County Schools, Jacksonville, Florida; to De- 
borah Sinkis and Sam McClure of Worcester 
Public Schools, Worcester, Massachusetts; to 
Mary-Jane Frazier of Grand Prairie Indepen- 
dent School District, Grand Prairie, Texas; and 
to Nancy Tucker of Caddo Parish School Sys- 
tem, Louisiana. Let us show you, too. 

For the name of the full-time Regional Educa- 
tional Coordinator in Y° ur area, call 
800-433-5682 toll-free. In Texas, call 
800-772-8538. 



Radio /hack 

The name in classroom computing" 

A DIVISION OF TANDY CORPORATION 



For more Information about Radio Shack 
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Radio Shack. D*pt 85-A-646. 300 On« Tandy Onter Fl Worth. TX 76 1 02 < 



J 



PERSONAL 



An Apple work alike 
at an attractive price. 



HAVAC 

from Microsci 




HARDWARE 
EVALUATION 



Owen Linzmayer 



Let's start right off by setting things 
straight. Havoc is a synonym for destruc - 
tion. HAVAC is an acronym for Home/ 
Academic Very Affordable Computer. 
This, my friends, is a review of the 64K 
Apple-compatible Havac computer from 
Mircosci. Now that we have dealt with 
the formalities, on with the review. 

History 

The Havac is a new computer with an 
interesting background. Back in the days 
of yesteryear, when software publishers 
were thriving on entertainment program 
sales, a small hardware firm decided that 
there was a market for a game machine 
that would run only Apple entertainment 
packages. 

Since it would only play games, all that 
was needed was a joystick port and a disk 
drive to load the programs, reasoned the 
hardware developers. Unfortunately, more 
and more new games were being intro- 
duced that required keyboard input to 
work correctly By the time the need for 
the keyboard became evident, it dawned 
upon the designer that he essentially had 

46 




HARDWARE 
PROFILE 



Product: Havac 

Type: Desktop 

CPU: 6502 

RAM: 64K/64K 

ROM: 8K 

Type of Keyboard: 63-key detachable 
full-stroke 

Text Resolution: 40 x 24 

Graphics Resolution: 280 x 192 

Number of Colors: 16 

Sound Capability: Yes 

Ports: Parallel, serial, disk drive, 
hand controller 

Dimensions: 5.5" x 10.75" x 14.5" 

Documentation: Fair 

Summary: An alternative Apple 
worth investigating. 




Microsci Engineering Manager Akin Silver, 
the proud designer of the Havac. 

Manufacturer: 

Microsci Corp. 
2158 S. Hathaway St. 
Santa Ana, CA 92705 
(714) 241-5600 



October 1 984 • Creative Computing 



PERSONAL 



an Apple-compatible computer. Why not 
expand the machine a bit and sell it as a 
full-blown computer system. That, dear 
readers, is the story of the Mircosci Havac. 

Reality 

The Havac of today is an unexpandable 
Apple-compatible computer based on the 
6502 microprocessor. The main unit sports 
somewhat cumbersome 10.75" x 14.5" x 
5.5" dimensions which encase a single- 
sided, single-density disk drive along with 
the computer motherboard. The heavily 
populated motherboard contains the 64K 
of RAM and 8K of ROM, as well as joy- 
stick, serial, and parallel interfaces. The 
detachable keyboard is a full-stroke 63- 
key model with the same layout as an 
Apple He. At $799 retail, the Havac lives 
up to its billing as a "very affordable 
computer." 



The detachable keyboard of the Havac 
has 63 full-stroke keys arranged in the 
same fashion as those on the Apple He 
keyboard. The cable to the main unit is 
hardwired to the keyboard and has a male 
15-pin D-type connector on the other end 
that plugs into the lefthand side of the 
Havac. The keyboard unit itself is made 
of plastic and does not feel very solid. 

However, I was pleasantly surprised to 
find that the response from the keys is 
excellent. I also like the fact that the caps 
lock key has a small red LED that lights 
up to signal when the key is active. In the 
upper lefthand corner of the keyboard is 
a Microsci emblem that acts as the power 
indicator for the computer. My only 
complaint about the keyboard is that the 
Tab, Delete, Shift, and Return keys are 
too small. 

Built into the front of the Havac is the 




The layout of the Havac keyboard is identical to that of the Apple He with the 
exception of a small LED on the Caps Lock Key. 



The design philosophy of the Havac is 
similar to that of the new Apple Ik (see 
review elsewhere in this issue). Both com- 
puters are compatible with the Apple II 
line of software, neither has expansion 
slots, and both provide the user with printer 
and communications ports built-in at no 
extra cost. The Havac is intended to "meet 
the needs of the first-time computer user." 

While the design philosophy may be 
the same for both computers, the physical 
designs are much different. Whereas the 
He is a sleek, low-profile computer, the 
Havac is a box-like system that resembles 
an old fashioned breadbox. Although the 
Havac will never be exhibited in the 
Museum of Modern Art, the substantial 
price difference between it and the lie 
makes it an attractive alternative. 

October 1 984 * Creative Computing 



disk drive. The unit is a typical Apple- 
compatible single-sided, single-density drive 
that is accessed as if it were in slot six of 
an Apple. The $199 optional external 
second drive is referenced as drive two, 
slot six. The disk drive closes with a small 
black lever. When a disk is inserted into 
the drive, the lever must be turned clock- 
wise to 12 o'clock to engage the drive 
properly. 

A disk containing the Havac disk oper- 
ating system (DOS) is supplied with the 
computer. I like the format and features 
of this DOS, but it is not as useful as 
Apple's new ProDOS. A Havac DOS disk 
can hold a maximum of 104 files and 
display eight at a time in the main menu. 
Each of the eight files currently displayed 
by DOS is given a number. At the bottom 



of the screen are nine DOS commands, 
each with its own number. By typing a 
command number followed by a file 
number, you can perform operations with 
a minimum of keyboard input. This is 
excellent for beginning computer users, 
the main audience for the Havac. 

Compatibility 

For any Apple-compatible machine, the 
most important consideration is just how 
compatible it really is. After testing quite 
a few commercial software packages, I 
estimate that the Havac is about 80% 
compatible with available Apple II soft- 
ware. The Havac will not run software 
packages written specifically for the fie, 
those that use CP/M, nor programs that 
need ProDOS and Applesoft Basic at the 
same time. 

There are several different boot pro- 
cedures that must be tried before you can 
determine whether or not a package will 
work on the Havac. These take into con- 
sideration different memory and language 
requirements, as well as if the program 

The Havac runs most 

(but not all) 

of the software 

for the Apple. 



can utilize lowercase. If the program needs 
Basic, you must own a copy of Apple 
DOS with Applesoft and Integer Basic. 
The Havac material suggests buying this 
disk from your local Apple dealer to clear 
up most compatibility problems that you 
may encounter. 

Interfaces 

The Havac has several ports for inter- 
facing a variety of peripherals. On the 
back of the main unit are the printer, 
communications, video, and second drive 
connectors. On the far left of the rear of 
the computer is the parallel printer inter- 
face. The printer port is a male 15-pin D- 
type connector. To interface a parallel 
printer, you must have the appropriate 
15-pin to Centronics cable available from 
Microsci for $40. You can also hook up a 
serial printer, but this is not as desirable 
since DIP switches on the bottom of the 
computer must be changed, and a special 
interface cable must be acquired. 

To the right of the printer port is an 
RCA phono jack for video output to any 
standard NTSC composite monitor. If you 
want to use your television set as a display, 
you must get an optional RF modulator 
that plugs into the RCA phono jack. 

Adjacent to the video output jack is 
the serial port. This female DB-25 con- 
nector is designed to be compatible with 

47 



9tf*L! 



PERSONAL 




^i< 



The HBJ Computer Test 
Preparation Series 

This proven study method has 
helped thousands of students 
score higher on the SAT, GRE, 
and ACT. 

Each package contains: 
double-sided diskettes, a 
cemprehensive review textbook, 
and a 50-page User's Manual 

COMPUTER PREPARATION 
for the SAT' $79.95 

Available for. Apple, Atari, 
Commodore, IBM-PC, IBM-PCjr, 
and TRS-80. 

COMPUTER PREPARATION 
for the GRE " S89.95 

Available for Apple. 

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for the ACT fWur! $89.95 

Available for Apple. 

0ute*/)W7 

Ask for these HBJ programs at 
your local computer store or 
bookstore or call 

800-543-1918 

for major credit card orders. 
In CA call collect 619-699-6335. 

HARCOURT BRACE JOVANOVICH 
^^^r^ 1250 Sixth Avenue 
Uj^ San Diego, CA 92101 

CIRCLE 140 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



the RS-232C standard serial interface. Since 
almost all telecommunications is done in 
serial, this is where you connect a modem. 
Of course, many other serial devices are 
available for the Apple II line of computers, 
but few use the standard DB-25 connector. 
If you wish to try to interface these third- 
party devices, you will have to build your 
own custom cables. 

All the way over on the righthand side 
of the rear of the Havac is a female DB-25 
connector for the second disk drive. 
Creative Computing was supplied with an 
external disk drive for this review, yet the 
cable coming out of the drive was too 
short for the unit to be placed to the right 
of the computer, the recommended 
position. I expect that this minor problem 
will be corrected by the time the Havac 
goes into full production. 

Toward the front of the computer on 
the righthand side is a 9-pin D-type game 
socket. This connector is identical to those 
on the He and lie computers. Any device 
that plugs into the hand controller socket 
of the He should work with the Havac. 
but since the He controller port leads to 
special mouse firmware, it is doubtful that 
all He peripherals can be used with the 
Havac. 

Support 

The software and documentation in- 
cluded with the Havac are woefully in- 
adequate. The word processor and com- 
munications package provided on the 
Havac DOS disk are bare bones programs 
with very few features. They serve well to 
introduce the first-time user to these ap- 
plications, but must be replaced with more 
powerful packages if you ever wish to do 
any real work in those areas. 

The same holds true for the documen- 
tation. The Havac manual is an intro- 
duction to the computer, not an in-depth 
look at how it works. For those interested 
in the advanced aspects of the Havac, a 
technical reference manual is available. 

Ads for the Havac tout it as "the very 
personal computer." As far as ease of set- 
up and interfacing go. the Havac lives up 
to this claim. Even more important is the 
price. Several thousand dollars does not a 
personal computer make, regardless of 
what IBM might try to tell you. The basic 
Havac, priced at $799 complete, is a very 
good buy if you are in the market for an 
Apple compatible computer. 

Like the He, Havac lacks expansion 
slots for exciting peripherals such as digi- 
tizers, sound boards, and voice gener- 
ators. The He has the advantage of carry- 
ing the Apple logo, which almost guaran- 
tees that third-party manufacturers will 
design dozens of lie-specific devices. 
Hopefully adaptors and interfaces will be 
available so that Havac owners can use 
the new He devices. ■ 

CIRCLE 404 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Discover Magic 
Office System 
at your local 
dealer: 



Joe Clark • Computer Supermarket 

1777 Main Street • Tewksbury, MA 01876 
617/8515317 

Dale Lack • Computer Headquarters 
10 Rider Ave. • Patchogue, NY 11772 
516/6548252 

Randy Sharp • Gulf Coast Computer Shoppe 
306 Perry Ave. SR • Ft. Walton Beach, PL 32548 
904/2448675 

Howard Stovall • Lexington Computer Store 

2909 Richmond Rd. • Lexington. KY 41 
606/268143! 

Charles Warner • The Softwarehouse 
Maple Hill Dr. • Kalamazoo, Ml 49009 
344 0276 

Bruce A. Blllingsley • Cinarco Elliott 

234 West Third • Davenport, IA 52801 

Bob Hudson • The Computer Patch Inc. 
2775 Mapl. >32 

312/420 8861 

Cinarco Elliott 
2200 36th Ave. • Molirv 
'7 0137 

Ryan Hodge • Pawnee Computer 
23822 - i .oddard. KS 67052 

18745 

Steve Gates • Computer SOS 

5731 Y( \ 71105 

318/8657188 

Gene Holley • The Computer Store 

eld • Wichita Kails. IX 76308 
•I 4552 

Vasant L. Abhyanker • Computers Plus Co 
4218 F. Wilshire Dr. . Phoenix. AZ 85008 
602/9551404 

Roger Mass • Software Supermarket 
!19f>< . 025 

17 1494 

Ken Welk • Apple Country Ltd. 

'036 

Greg Chamberlain • SGC Computer Goods 

700 Mowry Ave. • Fremo: 
408/490 3420 

Santa Rosa Computer Center 

521 Mondocino Ave. • Sat: J540I 

!8129l 

Stan Belzak • Juneau Electronics 
larbor Way • Juneau, AK 99801 



Jfc' 



October 1 984 < Creative Computing 



Here's the only integrated 
Apple program with 
all functions plus spelling 
checker on one disk: 

Magic Office System." 




This is much better 
than Applet- 





File Drawers contain. . . 



Pads and Folders. . . which 





At last! The four most useful business 
programs in one integrated package for your 
Apple lie and lie. 

Word Processing Spreadsheet. Business 
Graphics. And an online Spelling Checker. All 
in Magic Office System. 

One disk. No shuffle. 

Now you can do presentations for your boss, 
your clients, your banker or investors— complete 
with spreadsheets and explanatory graphics 
and every word spelled correctly. 

Or you can just do a simple letter— with 
every word spelled correctly. 

You automatically raise the quality of your 
communications with a significant reduction 
of hassle. 

WORD PROCESSING: an enhanced version 
of a very popular program with automatic 
formatting and printing. 

SPREADSHEET: more powerful than VisiCalc® 
and includes variable width columns and output 
formatting. 

BUSINESS GRAPHICS: easy to create pie 
charts and multiple bar charts. 

I LING CHECKER: first ever online auto- 
matic checker with room for any other words 
you wish to add. 

And Magic Office System's beautifully clear, 
simple icon menu organizes into visual file 
drawers with folders, documents and stationery 
for new material. You can move, edit, cut and 
paste with incredible ease. See the screens 
at left. 

Want a Magic Office System right now? 
Check with your local dealer. If he doesn't have 
it, send in the coupon below. 

You'll need 64k, an 80column ^ * 

display, two disk drives and 
a new outlook on using 
your computer: 
takin' it easy! 




I 1 

I can't find Magic Office System at my local dealer. 
Z] Please send me more information right now. 



Name . 






Address . 






Telephone 

Mail to: AR TSCI 5547 Satsuma Avenue 
North Hollywood, CA 01601 

Or call: 818/985 2Q22 






organize your documents. 



Printer selection is easy. 



;i_E 104 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



W interrupt this magazine i 




Microsoft Ouri, 
business graphics 



Microsoft Ahitplan, 
electron* spreadsheet. 



MacPrqject, 
project management. 




Dae Jones Spreadsheet link 
slock analysis and communications 



PUension, 
database management. 



Dow Jones Market Manager, 
slock analysis* 




MacWrUe, 
word processing 



HjeBase, 
database management 



MucDna: 
graphic illustration 




I lame Mac 'Accountant, 
personal jinance 



TK! Sower, 
equation proces s or. 



Habadex, 
dahihtiv and communications. 



■pTC*^ '? '?'", "/", *£"¥*! '/ '"" "'""""' I" •"'*"'"*«* Somememiailabk mm often mil be retemd in He comfy «wh •Mailable nb quarter. t9tk ' '. liwIMc U water. BWS 

"Wr* *"? ,nc .*f e - * S2^5 : Ji*2aS toclermmal.aikl.XkkUnk-.mtn*) .„„,„,„■ /,„ 

hwan metoeiaetffkdtakr mm* w* ,,,11(800) 53H '9696. In Cam** „,// (MM) 26H7796 ,„■ (HOO) 26H-76 i~ 



some important programs. 




Ihnik'liink 
idea processor. 



The Lotus Macintosh I W/«7. 
mttgrakd business softwari * 



MacTcrminal. 
data commun i cations 



Dollars anil feme, 
personal finance. 




Main Street Rler, 
i iatabase management 





Helix. 
relational databasR 




B -j* 


MMN 


■ 

H 
__ — -*- 


DM 

CVS11 
IBM* 

.1 -.1 


MM 10 

- t* • ««m 
r Till Um 


MM: tt/71/M 

» 
1 

tNMin rata > • « 


[ •••■- '1 




a n d a 
la a n n 
'n nan 




s 


™ 






n^.l 




L -^ 



Every business day, a new 
software program is being 
developed for the Macintosh™ 
Personal Computer. 

Software for word pro- 
cessing. Spreadsheets. Business 
graphics. Project management 
Database management. And 
data communications. 

As well as software that 
enables Macintosh to do things 
that have never been done on 
a computer before. 

Which means the worlds 
easiest-to-use business computer 
is well on its way to becoming 
the worlds most useful busi- 
ness computer. 

Any authorized Apple 
dealer will gladly demonstrate 
that fact. 

Just ask to see the com- 
puter that's software compatible. 

With human beings. 





I'HS: File 
database management 



Rsadtree's lltuk to Hums. 
accounting package. 







Learn 
at Home 



"Pre-school education" has become a 
very fashionable concept now that 
having babies has again become a 
fashionable pastime. The market for 
pre-school learning packages is consid- 
erable, and the choices available to 
parents and educators are overwhelming. 

Wc were spurred on in our desire to 
investigate the potential of some of these 
programs partly by those guilt-inducing 
TV commercials which appeared around 
Christmas and showed a loving father 
giving his darling pre-schooler "every 
educational and emotional advantage" 
and partly by the very real fact that we 
intend to educate our children at home 
for the next few years rather than send 
them to school. 

Our reviews, therefore, are written 
from the viewpoint of parents who want 
to see their children enjoy what they are 
doing and remain interested in a pro- 
gram long enough to justify the some- 
times substantial cost. We are also 
looking for the results of these programs 
in educational terms. In other words, 
what does the child really seem to learn, 
if anything? And does this learning cor- 




SOFTWARE 
EVALUATION 



Penny Smith 



relate with the manufacturer's claims? 

We do not use these programs as 
babysitters. One of our goals is to see 
how we, as parents, can interact with the 
computer and the child to enhance the 
learning process. At times this has not 



One of our goals is to 

see how we, as 
parents, can interact 

with the computer and 
the child to enhance 
the learning process. 



been easy, but at others the process has 
been exciting and fun as we have 
watched our children and their friends 
make new discoveries and grow in their 
understanding of the world around 
them. 

(Note: the father and child in the 
above-mentioned TV commercial cam- 
paign must just have booted up their 
program, because the father is not yet 
slapping the child's hand in frustration 
and demanding that he "do it the right 
way!" This is an almost overwhelming 
temptation and one that if succumbed to 
really ruins those warm feelings of 
giving the child every educational and 
emotional advantage.) 

The following are learning packages 
that focus on early language and reading 
skills, specifically letter identification 
and basic familiarity with the computer 
keyboard. 

Kids On Keys 

Kids on Keys is an educational pro- 
gram by Frieda Lekkerkerker designed 
to introduce children to the computer 




Kids On Keys 



52 



October 1 984 « Creative Computing 






IF 


•: 






M 








At first glance, they look like funny 
creatures right out of a computer game 
shoot 'em up. But underneath the funny 
surface, they represent one of the most 
serious approaches to home education 
you've ever heard of. 
INTRODUCING SPROUT ~ SOFTWARE. 
GAMES THAT TEACH. 

These amazing teachers are 
called Tink and Tbnk. They come from 
Sprout. Software for kids 4 to 8. 

The beauty of Sprout is how we 
balance entertainment with a healthy 
dose of education. 

While kids are having fun at home, 
they're reinforcing what they've learned 
at school. Things like the alphabet, spell- 



ing, vocabulary, counting, adding, and 
pattern recognition. 

Vbull also like how Sprout prevents 
boredom. Our games grow up, instead 
of wear out. As kids get older, the game 
gets harder— with many variations 
and many decisions to 
make. 

Sprout didn't 
learn how to do all this 
overnight. You see, 
we've got a hundred 
years of experience to 
lean on. (Our parent 
company is SFN, 
the country's #1 text 
book publisher for 

CompaMXe with Atari.* Commodore? Apple' 




elementary and high schools.) 

We've also got the experience of 
Mercer Mayer, who has written or illus- 
trated 80 children's books. He dazzles 
kids with ideas and pictures that keep 
them coming back for more. 

So letTINKTONK! "software teach 
your kids. And when they play at the 
computer they won't be playing around. 
They'll be learning something. 

Games that grow up. 
Instead of wear out. 



INK'TCW characters «> 1963 ™* TON* »*: «• "«*« reserved TNKTONK' K a trademark of TNK TONK. mc Sprout is published By landscape, he NortrOroc*. « 60062 

CIRCLE 173 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



EDUCATION 



keyboard while they learn to identify let- 
ters, numbers, and words. It is challeng- 
ing and stimulating enough to engage 
the interest of pre-schoolers and adults. 
Our test players included, among others, 
a three-year-old and a recent college 
graduate. 

There are three games from which to 
choose and four levels for each game. 
There is also an option which allows you 
to create your own pictures and words 
for Games 2 and 3. 

In Game I letters and numbers float 
from the top of the screen to the bottom 
at varying rates of speed depending upon 
the level chosen. The player must type 
the letter or number before it disappears. 
After 15 letters and numbers, a balloon 
carrying a child and displaying a word 
appears. The player must type the word 
correctly, and the balloon goes up and 
bonus points are scored. In Levels 1 and 



Ms. Lekkerkerker's 

preschool subjects 

must have taken touch 

typing at the Better 

Baby College. 



2 three-letter words are used on the bal- 
loon. Those in Levels 3 and 4 are slightly 
longer. 

Game 2 features a group of pictures, 
which float down the screen and dis- 
appear one at a time. The player must 
type the first letter of the word that 
identifies the object descending the 
screen in Level 1 . In Levels 2, 3, and 4, 
the player must type the entire word be- 
fore the picture disappears. A bonus 
round in which a partial picture of each 
object floats its way down allows the 
player to add extra points to his score. 

The third game shows pictures that 
are numbered from 1 to 5. A word ap- 
pears on the screen, and the player has 
to type the number that corresponds to 
the picture of that word before the word 
disappears at the bottom of the screen. 
Three tries are allowed to type the cor- 
rect answer. The points awarded de- 
crease with each try. Again a bonus 
round allows the player to gain addi- 
tional points by identifying by number a 
partially revealed picture. 

The option which allows the player to 
create his own words and pictures for 
the second and third games requires a 
blank disk and a joystick for drawing the 
pictures. This aspect of the program is 
really a great deal of fun and expands 
the life of the program enormously as far 
as maintaining the child's interest and 

54 



encouraging creative exploration of the 
keyboard. These characteristics prolong 
the life of the program and protect the 
parent's investment. In our book this is a 
definite plus. We rate it significant 
learning tool and an excellent value for 
the money. 

Having said that, we do have a couple 
of bones to pick with Ms. Lekkerkerker. 
These center around the concepts being 
taught and the level of dexterity needed 
to play the games which teach them. The 
program is said to be suitable for chil- 
dren ages 3 to 9. We tested it with a 
reasonably bright three-year-old who be- 
came frustrated and anxious at not being 
able to catch more than two or three of 
the letters which were showered down at 
the easiest level of the easiest game. Ms. 
Lekkerkerker's preschool subjects must 
have taken touch typing at the Better 
Baby College because none of the pre- 
schoolers we tested (who were, indeed, 
at the keyboard exploration stage) had a 
snowball's chance in hell of getting a 
particularly satisfactory or reinforcing 
response from the computer. We were 
able to circumvent this difficulty by hav- 
ing the child call out the letter/number 
or word to an adult who then typed it on 
the keyboard. This arrangement worked 
quite well in the letter/number/word 
identification category, but was not ter- 
ribly effective in familiarizing the child 
with the keyboard, which is one of the 
avowed objectives of the program. 

Another problem we had with Games 
2 and 3 was that the lo-res pictures of 
objects were sometimes difficult to iden- 
tify in the time it took for the object to 
descend the screen. Something that 
might be a coat or a shirt or a jacket or a 
blouse floats down a bit too quickly to 
give you a chance to explore all of the 
alternatives. Kids learn quickly, though, 
and this does prolong the life of the pro- 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Kids on Keys 
Type: Educational game 
Suggested Age: 3 to 9 

System: 48K Apple, Atari, 

Commodore 64, IBM PC 
Format: Disk 
Summary: Identify letters, numbers 

and words. 
Price: $34.95 
Manufacturer: 

Spinnaker Software 

215 First St. 

Cambridge, MA 02142 

(617) 494-1200 



gram. They'll get it next time through! 

The partial pictures of the bonus 
rounds compound this problem. A little 
shape which might be the toe of a boot 
or the sleeve of a coat or part of a flower 
pot floats down the screen. The first few 
times it is quite frustrating, but even an 
adult can do it after a while. 

Summary 

Kids on Keys is an entertaining and 
imaginative program. It can be interest- 
ing even for a parent who will find it 
necessary to assist a pre-schooler in 
playing the various games. The Make 
Pictures option will keep an older child 
involved for hours experimenting with 
this aspect of the programming function. 
With assistance, pre-schoolers can learn 
letter/number and word identification, 
and older children can become proficient 
in keyboard manipulation. 



The children seemed to 

be incorporating the 

words they learned 

playing the games into 
their vocabularies. 



The primary hang-up appears to be 
that these two learning steps cannot take 
place at the same time. A child who is 
young enough to need to learn letter 
identification does not normally have 
the dexterity or familiarity with the key- 
board to use the program unaided. One 
who is able to identify the letter and find 
it on the keyboard before it sinks into 
oblivion is usually past the age when let- 
ter identification is a significant hurdle. 

In short, it is a good package but it re- 
quires flexibility and creativity in the 
adult who is supervising its use and 
could use some further documentation 
to help out in this process. 

CIRCLE 405 ON READER SERVICE CARD 

Word Pieces 

Roger Shank has produced a fill-in- 
the-blank-type program designed to 
teach young children to distinguish be- 
tween letters of the alphabet, to build the 
child's vocabulary, and to familiarize the 
child with the letters of the alphabet. 
This package turned out to be an im- 
mediate favorite with our young testers. 

The program consists of three sets of 
two-letter word endings, which are dis- 
played on the screen following the cred- 
its. The child selects -AR, -OG, or -IN. 
The appropriate pair of letters appears 
on the screen, and the child then at- 
tempts to make a complete word by 

October 1 984 " Creative Computing 



pitstop n. 



I 




r 




When we introduced Pitstop, 
we created action in the pits. 
Now, with PITSTOP II, EPYX 
introduces true competitive auto 
racing, both on the track and in 
the pits. Auto racing is not a one 
man sport. With PITSTOP II, 
you can now experience the thrill 
of speed and competition as you battle your opponent in 
a race against the clock. Now, more than ever, the strategy 
of when you make a pit stop and your pit crew's speed 
and performance, combined with your skill on the track, 
will determine the winner. 
A split screen shows you your position and that of your 

CIRCLE 141 





opponent, a digital clock displays time and a lap 
counter gives you your race position as you race 
against each other in pursuit of the checkered flag. 
You can also play against the computer and take 
a practice lap or race against the computer controlled 
pace car as you prepare for real head to-head com- 
petition. Step up to PITSTOP II because auto racing 
is not a solo sport. 
One or two players: Joystick controlled. 




Strategy Games for the Action-Game Player 

ON READER SERVICE CARD 



EDUCATION h 




choosing a letter of the alphabet to go 
with that word ending. When the child 
presses a letter key, that letter appears 
on the screen and moves toward the 
word ending. If the letter and ending 
make a complete word, for example, 
DOG, LOG, or FOG, several things 
happen to show a successful combina- 
tion has been made: The word flashes, 
musical sounds play, and an animated 
hi-res illustration of the word appears on 
the screen. 

If the child chooses an initial letter 
that does not combine with the ending to 
make a complete word, for example, 
XOG or QOG, a blotch appears and the 
computer beeps. 

This is an easy program for young 
children to use, and our young testers 
enjoyed it enormously. The pictures are 
humorous if a bit ambiguous in their 
illustration of certain words. How, for 
example, would you illustrate the word 
"kin" or "tin?" For certain other words 
such as GAR, PAR, and SIN, a picture 
of a school teacher pointing to a black- 
board appears with a note to ask a par- 
ent or teacher about these more abstract 
or uncommon words. 

It is definitely more rewarding to call 
forth one of the illustrations rather than 
rely solely on random selection of let- 
ters, and we found that the children did 
take note of the spellings of their favorite 
words and were able to produce them in- 
dependently as well as with the help of 
the computer. They also seemed to be 
incorporating the words they learned 
playing the games into their vocabu- 
laries. Therefore, it would appear that 
this program does, in fact, deliver the 
type of learning experience it advertises. 
Although we tested Word Pieces in a 
home situation, we feel it would be very 
appropriate in a classroom as well. 

There is much to be learned from the 
concepts presented in this program. The 

56 



Word Pieces 



only real misgiving we have about the 
program is the rather limited scope of 
the letter combinations allowed. Once a 
child has gone through the three word 
families, a feat which can be accom- 
plished in a matter of minutes, he can 
easily lose interest. However, with a cer- 
tain amount of creativity on the part of 
the adult in making up games and new 
ways to use the information learned, we 
found that this program actually had a 
reasonably long life and represented a 
good value for the money. 

Summary 

Word Pieces gets good marks for 
teaching what it says it's going to teach, 
good graphics, and a great amount of 
raw material with which to work in 
creating games and exercises to reinforce 
the concepts presented. 

The people at Compu-Teach would do 
well to include some suggestions for 
alternate approaches to the use of the 
program in the documentation and ex- 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Word Pieces 

Type: Educational game 

Suggested Age: 3 to 7 

System: 48K Apple, IBM PC 

Format: Disk 

Summary: Players creates words 

which are illustrated on screen. 
Price: $29.95 
Manufacturer: 

Compu-Tech Inc. 

240 Bradley St. 

New Haven, CT 06511 

(213)777-7738 



panded the number of word-ending 
games available in the package. 

CIRCLE 406 ON READER SER VICE CARD 

Letters and Words 

Learning Well's Letters and Words is 
much more interesting than its slightly 
utilitarian-looking packaging and docu- 
mentation might lead you to think. The 
package contains three games of varying 
difficulty to appeal to children from pre- 
schooler age to "up." We tested the pro- 
gram only on pre-schoolers and found 
that a five-year-old could do all but the 
most difficult level with relative ease. 
Our appraisal leads us to be a little more 
specific and put an age range of 3 to 6 on 
this particular game package. 

There is a fairly long wait between 
loading the program and the appearance 
of the first screen. The designers have 
thoughtfully made it possible to bypass 
the introductory musical sequence. This 
is a minor point, but helpful if your child 
changes his mind a lot about which 
game he wants to play. 

Letters and Words is designed to pro- 
vide practice and reinforcement in three 
early reading skills. Game 1 teaches the 
concept of alphabetical order. Game 2 
focuses on matching upper-and lower- 
case letters. Game 3 reinforces sight 
vocabulary and word picture matching 
skills. 

In each game four boxes appear at the 
bottom of the screen. The player reg- 
isters his responses by pressing the 
spacebar when the appropriate box is 
highlighted. The first box shows a little 
"yes man" who nods his head up and 
down. The second box shows the same 
little man shaking his head "no". The 
third box shows a question mark which 
indicates that the player has doubts 
about the answer and would like some 
help. 

Pressing the bar when the question 

October 1 984 «> Creative Computing 



u 



:.mi:in:Mi[.- 



YOUR MISSION-TO SAVE THE WORLD. 



■ 







■ 

w 







As a member of the exclu- 
sive Anti-Computer Terrorist 
Squad (ACT), your mission is 
to find and reach the infamous 
Elvin, who is holding the 
world's population hostage 
under threat of nuclear annihi- 
lation. You must negotiate a 

path through the rooms and tunnels of his headquarters 

trying to avoid Elvin's robot protectors. 

Should you .try to outrun or jump over the next 

robot or play it safe and take the time to assemble the 

codes needed to deactivate the robots and then to 





CIRCLE 138 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




find and stop Elvin. 

Use your camera to photograph as many clues 
as possible to find the password which will allow 
you to penetrate Elvin's control room. 

Your Mission -To Save The World, But Hurry! 

One player; joystick controlled. 



EDYX 



Strategy Games for the Action-Game Player 




box is highlighted produces a short 
instructional sequence after which the 
game continues. The final box shows a 
hand waving goodbye. This box returns 
you to the main menu. It took our 
testers a little while to get their decision- 
making processes coordinated with the 
automatic progression the box high- 
lighter. There is a "utility" option which 
allows you to decrease the amount of 
time each box is highlighted. Decreasing 
the amount of time between highlighted 
changes, oddly enough, seemed to help 
the younger children work with this re- 
sponse method. It is nice to have this op- 
tion available. 

Game 1 features alphabetization or 
the concept that letters come in some 
sort of order. Four letters drop down 
from the revolving "letter machine," 
leaving a space between the second and 
third letters. The space is filled by a 
boxed letter, and the player must decide 
if the letter in the box is in correct 
alphabetical order. 

For example, the letters DE-GH may 
drop down. The space between E and G 
might then be filled with an L. If the 
player makes the correct response (i.e. 
that the L is not in correct alphabetical 
order) the letter is X'ed out, a little tune 
plays, and the player receives a 
"present" (more about this later). 

This is not a difficult game, but it does 
offer valuable practice in a concept that 
adults take for granted but of which 
children sometimes are not aware. Dur- 
ing the game, the alphabet marches by 
on the top of the screen to give addi- 
tional help. 

Game 2 features a "letter splitting ma- 
chine," which spits out an upper-and a 
lowercase letter. The player decides if 
they are correctly matched. Again, if the 
player gives the right response, he adds 
another present to his collection. 

In the third game an object appears on 
58 



Letters and Words 



Most four-year-olds 

would prefer a kite, a 

puppy, a car, and a ring 

to 4000 points any day. 



the screen. Lowercase letters then pop 
out to form a word. The player must de- 
cide if the word describes the picture. A 
present is the reward for a correct re- 
sponse. This game has three different 
sets of words which increase in length 
and difficulty and can be loaded in the 
Utilities mode. It is this option that 
makes the package valuable for children 
above pre-school age. 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Letters and Words 
Type: Educational game 
Suggested Age: Pre-K and up 
System: 48K Apple, IBM PC, PCjr. 
Format: Disk 
Summary: Animated graphics 

reinforce letter identification, 

alphabetization and early 

reading skills. 
Price: $49.95 
Manufacturer: 

Learning Well 

200 South Service Rd. 

Roslyn Heights, NY 11577 

(516)621-1540 

Methods & Solutions, Inc., 

Woburn, MA 01801 



The presents are little gift-wrapped 
surprise packages which accumulate 
with each right answer during a game 
round. Up to ten presents can be ac- 
quired each round, and they are stored 
in the upper lefthand corner of the 
screen to be opened at the end of the 
round by a special machine. This is a 
clever approach to score-keeping. Most 
four-year-olds would prefer a kite, a 
puppy, a car, and a ring to 4000 points 
any day: even if the prizes do vanish 
when the next round starts. We found 
one of our testers striving to get at least 
five points each time since present num- 
ber 5 in Game 2 is a puppy . . . wishful 
thinking. 

The Utilities section offers three func- 
tions in addition to changing the timing 
of the answer box highlight and loading 
new word lists as mentioned above. A 
Performance Summary allows you to re- 
view a player's performance on the last 
round of a game played. This is not so 
crucial at home, but might be very help- 
ful in a classroom situation. It records 
the number of questions answered and 
the exact letters and/or words which 
were missed in that round. This record is 
cleared when another round is played or 
when you press S in the Utilities mode to 
set all scores at zero. 

The Utilities also allow you to control 
the number of questions presented in 
each round you play. You can choose up 
to 10 questions per round. 

The documentation ends with four 
suggested activities to reinforce the con- 
cepts and skills in the package. Activities 
of this sort — yarn writing, alphabet hop- 
scotch, etc. — are pretty standard fare in 
most nursey schools and kindergartens, 
but presenting them with the computer 
learning games is a nice touch and is 
helpful in encouraging parent/teacher 
creativity. It also acts as a reminder that 
the skills presented are not designed 

October 1984 » Creative Computing 



SUMMER GAMES. 
NOW IT'S YOUR CHANCE TO GO FOR THE GOLD. 



JflSfeK 











You're an Olympic athlete competing 
in eight key events at the Summer Games. 
How well can you score in track, swim- 
ming, diving, shooting, gymnastics and 
more? So realistic, there's even an 
opening ceremony and awards presen- 
tation after each event. 

Unlike other "Olympics- Like" games. 
Summer Games has incredible realism, 
superb state-of-the-art graphics and 
sound effects (including national anthems 
from 18 countries), and it is a true 
action strategy game. In each event you 



must plan and execute your game 
strategy in order to maximize your score. 
It is not just a matter of how fast you 
can move the joystick. 

So change into your running shoes, 
grab your joystick and GO FOR 
THE GOLD! 

One or more players: jtrystick controlled. 

epyx 

Strategy Games for the Action-Game Player 




CIRCLE 130 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



EDUCATION 




A B sCenes 



primarily to roll up high scores on a 
computer screen but must be reinforced 
and applied to real-life situations. 

Summary 

Letters and Words is an easy program 
for a child to use and entertaining 
enough to hold his interest for quite a 
long time. The documentation is good 
and includes several helpful suggestions 
for followup on the skills and concepts 
presented. 

The ingenious scoring and response 
systems are excellent examples of pro- 
gramming geared to the non-reader. 
And, finally, it does, indeed, appear to 
give some value practice in alphabetiza- 
tion and letter recognition skills. Good 
job, Learning Well. 

CIRCLE 407 ON READER SERVICE CARD 

A B sCenes, Level 1 

A B sCenes operates on the premise 
that even on the complicated maze of 
the computer keyboard a young child 
can remember the location of a key that 
calls forth a pleasing graphic illustra- 
tion; and in using that key over and over 
he will learn to distinguish between let- 
ters and discover the symbolic relation- 
ships among letters, words, and objects. 
Amazingly enough, this premise seems 
to be valid. Even a very young three- 
year-old who tested the first game for us 
was successful and was able to produce 
certain animated pictures at will after a 
little practice. 

The package consists of three games 
which are represented on the menu 
screen by an E followed by an egg for 
Game 1; an egg followed by an E for 
Game 2; and an egg followed by the 
word EGG for Game 3. 

Game 1 is very simple and designed to 
encourage familiarity with the computer 
keyboard as well as discrimination be- 
tween letters. The child can produce an 

60 



A B sCenes is a very 

appealing game which 

was enjoyed by every 

child who tested it. 



animated picture of an object by pressing 
any key on the keyboard. E, obviously, 
produces an egg which cracks open to 
reveal a little chick. Q calls forth a pic- 
ture resembling Elizabeth II and a ren- 
dition of "God Save the Queen." 

G is a gate that opens as a sun rises 
and the "Hallelujah Chorus" plays in 
the background. ((It would be wise for 
the parent or teacher to be available to 
explain that G stands for gate and not 
sun. This sort of logical mistake on the 
child's part would certainly be counter- 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: A B sCenes, Level 1 
Type: Educational game 
Suggested Age: 3 to 6 
System: 48K Apple, IBM PC 
Format: Disk 
Summary: Letters and beginning 

reading skills are taught by 

animated graphics. 
Price: $29.95 
Manufacturer: 

Compu-Teach Inc. 

240 Bradley St. 

New Haven, CT 065 11 

(203) 777-7738 



productive as far as learning initial letter 
sounds. We also found it necessary to ex- 
plain that X stands for X-ray and not 
skeleton.) 

These two examples notwithstanding, 
the graphics are extremely clever and 
imaginative, and the children enjoyed 
playing this game long after we had be- 
come bored with it. At the next sitting 
they also seemed to remember which let- 
ters went with which pictures, so even 
the very young ones had begun the 
learning process which the instruction 
booklet lists as one of the objectives of 
the package. 

Game 2 embellishes the process begun 
in the first game. This time a picture ap- 
pears, and the player must type the first 
letter of the word in order to see the 
animation and hear the little tune. He 
must press the Y to get the yoyo to go 
up and down or the J to make the lid of 
the jar open and close. This game was 
beyond the very young players but gave 
a feeling control that four- and five-year- 
olds who were more familiar with begin- 
ning letter sounds enjoyed. 

Game 3 is just like Game 2 except 
that the player must type the entire 
word rather than just the first letter. 
When the first letter is typed, the picture 
moves slightly, and a series of hyphens 
appears to indicate the number of letters 
in the word. When the full word is com- 
pleted, the picture finishes its animation 
sequence, and a new object appears. 

A B sCenes is a very appealing game 
which was enjoyed by every child who 
tested it. Since this was one of the first 
packages we tested, it has received quite 
a bit of use, and we have been able to ob- 
serve that the children do seem to 
progress from one level to the next of 
their own accord after they have mas- 
tered the skills presented at each level. 
Our five-year-old goes directly to Game 
3 to work on complete words rather 

October 1 984 ■ Creative Computing 



EDUCATION 




than play on the less challenging levels. 
While the younger children will return 
to Game 1 for a time, they seem to be 
applying the letter sounds learned to the 
more intentional requirements of Game 
2. 

These are easy games for a child to 
play alone or with other children. Apart 
from the minor explanations noted 
above, little adult supervision is needed. 
This is a big plus because the children 
enjoyed the animated graphics long after 
the adult were ready to call it quits. 

Jordan Mechner has done a terrific 
job with .the graphics and program 
design. He has produced a usable and 
enjoyable package. One observation we 
should make as far as the learning of let- 
ter sounds, however, is that in the spell- 
ing game (Game 3) many of the. words 
end in a silent E. As the children play 
the game, they are building a sight word 
vocabulary, but they can also be con- 
fused by the vagaries of English spelling 
rules. 

Summary 

We consider A B sCenes an excellent 
investment. Although the games are 
simple and the number of possible 
graphic presentations necessarily limited 
to 26, the children with whom we tested 
it were all enthralled with it and ap- 



peared to be polishing their reading and 
spelling skills as well. 

A B sCenes, Level II 

A B sCenes Level II is basically identi- 
cal to Level I except that the words used 
are significantly longer and more diffi- 
cult than those in the first package. For 
example, the Level I word for K is key. 
The Level II word is kangaroo. In the 
first level, U is used as the initial letter in 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: A B sCenes, Level II 

Type: Educational game 

Suggested Age: 3 to 6 

System: 48K Apple 

Format: Disk 

Summary: Letters and beginning 

reading skills taught by 

animated graphics. 
Price: $29.95 
Manufacturer: 

Compu-Teach Inc. 

240 Bradley St. 

New Haven, CT 06511 



the word up. Umbrella is illustrated in 
Level II. 

This difference is not particularly im- 
portant in Games 1 and 2 since the only 
factor that comes into play in both pro- 
grams is the initial letter sound. Up to 
this point, the child who enjoyed A B 
sCenes, Level I will have a similar, if 
slightly shorter-lived, love affair with 
Level II. 

The problem arises in Game 3 in 
which the player is required to type the 
entire word correctly to animate the 
graphic illustration. In Level I it is not 
too great a step from learning that the 
initial letter in the word ant is an A to 
being able to reproduce the sight word 
"ant." However, it is quite a feat to go 
from learning the initial letter in kan- 
garoo to being able to type out the entire 
word. Kangaroo is not a "sight word." 
It is one that takes a good deal of prac- 
tice to sound out and spell. 

Summary 

Although we can give A B sCenes 
Level I an enthusiastic review, Level II 
seems to make too great a jump in skill 
level between games to achieve the same 
sort of sequential mastery and self- 
motivation that make Level I so 
valuable. 

CIRCLE 408 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




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Sensible Speller is friendly and fast, taking only a minute or two to 
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CIRCLE 183 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



October 1 984 < Creative Computing 



61 



EDUCATION 



The Intersection of 
Sesame Street and Silicon Alley 

CCW Educational Games for the Color Computer 




SOFTWARE 
EVALUATION 



Owen Linzmayer 



All across America kids sit spellbound 
in front of their television sets watching 
educational PBS broadcasts. No, they 
are not watching Masterpiece Theater, 
but rather, the Children's Television 
Workshop's popular series, "Sesame 
Street." Instead of forcing educational 
material upon the kids, CTW actually 
makes it fun to learn. Colorful puppets 
like Oscar the Grouch, Big Bird, and the 
lovable couple Ernie and Bert capture 
the children's imaginations, become 
their lifelong friends, and in the process, 
teach the kids about arithmetic and the 
alphabet. 

A close relative of CTW is the Chil- 
dren's Computer Workshop (CCW), 
which has licensed a series of educa- 
tional programs for the TRS-80 Color 
Computer to Radio Shack. Modeled on 
the popular TV series, the CCW pro- 
grams incorporate some Sesame Street 
favorites into the games. Big Bird is one 
of my all-time favorite characters, so 
let's start by examining Big Bird's Spe- 
cial Delivery. 

Big Birds Special 
Delivery 

Like all CCW games, Big Bird's Spe- 
cial Delivery comes in a color-coded 
package that denotes the intended age 
group of the audience. Special Delivery is 
geared toward children between three 
and six years old. The instruction man- 
ual is yellow, and the cassette tape 
enclosed requires a 16K Color Com- 
puter with Extended Basic. 

The object of Big Bird's Special Deliv- 
ery is for the child to help Big Bird and 

62 



Little Bird deliver 
packages to the cor- 
rect stores. There are 
two different games 
included, and two 
levels of difficulty for 
each game. 

The first, easier 
game is called The 
Same Game, in which 
Little Bird appears 
carrying a package on 
his head. The child 
must identify what it 
is Little Bird is carry- 
ing, and then locate 
the store which has 
the same object dis- 
played in its window. 

Using the left and 
right arrow keys, 
the child moves Little 
Bird beneath the correct store, and then 
presses the up arrow to fly the package 
to its intended recipient. If the child is 
correct, the store owner nods his head, 
and the package is delivered. If, however, 




The child must identify 
what it is Little Bird is 

carrying, and then 

locate the store which 

has the same object 

displayed in its 

window. 



the child's guess is wrong, the owner shakes 
his head No. 

The child continues matching the 
packages with the objects in the win- 
dows until all four stores have received 
their packages, at which point all of the 
display lights blink on and off and four 



Big Bird's Special Delivery 

new window objects appear. 

The Same Game is a good starting 
point to get the child comfortable with 
the idea of using the keyboard to 
manipulate objects on screen. Older chil- 
dren will be more challenged by Find 
the Right Kind, the more difficult game 
of the two. The premise is the same: the 
child must deliver packages, but instead 
of matching pictures, the child must 
determine what store sells objects similar 
to the one Little Bird is carrying. 

Find the Right Kind is something like 
the "which of these doesn't belong" 
game played on Sesame Street. For 
instance, Big Bird gives Little Bird a ba- 
nana to deliver. There are pictures of a 
flower, a dress, a piano, and an apple in 
the store windows. The child must make 
the connection that both bananas and 
apples are fruit and then deliver the ba- 
nana to the store with the apple in its 
display. 

Big Bird's Special Delivery was the 
favorite package among our playtesters. 
Pam, a cute four-year-old, loved this 
one, even though she had to be helped 

October 1 984 e Creative Computing 



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Full of ready-to-use ideas, you'll get 
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• How to maximize color reception from 
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• How to construct a monitor cable 

• Advice on solving disk drive problems 

• An introduction to Simon's BASIC 

• Multi-voice sound potential 

• Animation 

All the information you'll need to make 
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CIRCLE 213 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



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EDUCATION 



imeESis 




Crover's Number Rover 



sometimes while playing Find the Right 
Kind. 

At first I was a bit skeptical about the 
Sesame Street characters being used to 



r 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Big Bird's Special Delivery 

(RS#26-2525) 
Type: Educational Game 
System: Extended Basic TRS-80 

Color Computer 
Format: Cassette 
Summary: Figure recognition and 

association 
Price: $19.95 
Manufacturer: 

Tandy-Radio Shack 

Fort Worth, TX 76102 



sell software, thinking it was only a 
marketing trick, but it seems that the 
character tie-in really makes the chil- 
dren want to play again and again. 



Grover's Number Rover 

Also designed for the same age group 
is Grover's Number Rover. Grover is blue 
and looks as though he could be Oscar 
the Grouch's well-groomed cousin. He 
pilots a large space ship adorned with 
ten windows. Strange creatures called 
Twiddles roam the planet surface be- 
neath the UFO, and the children can 
move these Twiddles around, as well as 
suck them up into the space ship. There 
are several sections to Grover's Number 
Rover, all of which have internal 
instructions and two levels of play. 

The easier levels are intended to famil- 
iarize the child with the controls used in 

64 



play: the arrow keys and enter. Once 
the child has become accustomed to 
these, more difficult games can be 
played. 

Twiddles Counting is the first game 
that has any real educational value. In it, 
the child counts the number of Twiddles 
on the screen and then presses the num- 
ber key that tells how many he sees. Af- 
ter pressing the key, the number appears 
on the screen, and the child can change 
his answer before pressing the enter 
key. If the child is correct, a big tube 
beams the Twiddles up into Grover's 
Number Rover. Not only does this game 
reinforce the child's counting skills, it 
helps the child associate the number he 
speaks while counting with the written 
number he sees on the keyboard and 
screen. 

Twiddle Away and Twiddle Adding 
present the child with simple subtraction 
and addition problems, respectively. 
These two sections are most advanta- 
geous if an adult sits nearby and helps 
the child when problems crop up. 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Grover's Number Rover 

(RS#26-2522) 
Type: Educational game 
System: Extended Basic TRS-80 

Color Computer 
Format: Cassette 
Summary: Fundamental 

mathematics 
Price: $19.95 
Manufacturer: 

Tandy-Radio Shack 

Fort Worth, TX 76102 



Flip Side 

It isn't long before even three- and 
four-year-olds can add and subtract sin- 
gle digit numbers using Grover's Number 
Rover. This gives the child a head start 



Twiddle Away and 

Twiddle Adding 

present the child with 

simple subtraction and 

addition problems. 



when it comes to learning more ad- 
vanced concepts in school. While the 
sound effects and graphics of this pack- 
age aren't very exciting, they suffice to 
keep the children interested. Grover's 
Number Rover is well done, and success- 
fully teaches the fundamentals of addi- 
tion and subtraction at the child's own 
pace. 

Flip Side 

Flip Side is a CCW game aimed at 
children ten and older. In addition to 
Extended Basic, Flip Side requires two 
joysticks to play. The object of the game 
is for the child to fill the entire board 
with colored blocks. Whether or not a 
position is flipped to a certain color 
block depends upon the surround rules 
that appear in the upper righthand cor- 
ner of the game screen. If, for example, 
an F is located below the number 4, then 
any position surrounded by four blocks 
will "F'lip to the other color. Other 
possibilities are "U"nflip and "N"o 
change. The players decide upon the sur- 
round rules that govern the play of the 
game. 

One or two kids can play Flip Side, 
though there is no computer opponent if 

October 1984 « Creative Computing 



EDUCATION 




only one child is playing. This is some- 
what disappointing, as it is much more 
fun to compete. The cursors are moved 
around the board using the joysticks, 
and a position is claimed by pressing the 
red button. Once the enter key is 
pressed, the computer scans the board 
and flips and unflips pieces based upon 
the surround rules chosen earlier. Some- 
times a child may think that he is close 



Sometimes a child may 

think that he is close to 

victory, when all of a 

sudden, the entire 

board flips over to the 

opponent's colorl 



to victory, when all of a sudden, the 
entire board flips over to the opponent's 
color! 

Flip Side is intended for children ten 
and older. I think it is much better 
suited for even older kids, maybe even 
young adults. The concept is interesting, 
yet it is very difficult to plan a worth- 



while strategy. Even Gail, Pam's preco- 
cious 12-year-old friend, had difficulty 
playing Flip Side. In fact, I gave the 
game a whirl and found it challenging, if 
not frustrating! Instead of making a sim- 
ple game in which the goal is to have 
children "look ahead," plan their actions 
and predict the computer's reactions, 
CCW has turned Flip Side into a very 
difficult game that becomes frustrating 
before it becomes fun. 

A word about all of the TRS-80 Color 
Computer CCW educational games: you 
shouldn't expect to hand any of these 
packages to your child and send him off 
to the computer alone. Plan to spend 
anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour 
teaching the child how to play the game, 
which keys to press, and simply en- 
couraging him to try answers even 
though they are not sure it is correct. 
Your initial investment of time and 
attention will pay off, as the child will 
want to come back later and play the 
games alone — just for the fun of it. If 
you don't tell the kids that these CCW 
games are good for them, you won't ruin 
their fun. 

The CCW games should have been 
released on ROM cartridges, not cas- 
sette tapes. As it stands now, someone 
familiar with the workins of the Color 



Computer must help the child type the 
correct commands to load the tape, and 
then stand by to insure that nothing goes 
wrong. A ROM pack would be the easi- 
est, fastest, and most efficient way to 
load these programs. Thanks to the 
Atari VCS, almost every child in Amer- 
ica knows how to insert a cartridge! 
Let's hope that in the future Radio 
Shack considers this change in medium. 

CIRCLE 410 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Flip side (RS#26-2529) 
Type: Educational game 
System: Extended Basic TRS-80 

Color Computer 
Format: Cassette 
Summary: Too advanced for young 

users 
Price: $19.95 
Manufacturer: 

Tandy-Radio Shack 

Fort Worth, TX 76102 



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CIRCLE 189 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



October 1984 c Creative Computing 



65 



EDUCATION 



Growing Up 

Literate 

Learning to Read and Write 
by Computer 




This month we deal with the first two 
of the three R*s here, while Dave Ahl 
looks at the third elsewhere in the issue. 
We have a reading package for third to 
fifth graders and two grammar packages 
which should help older students with 
spoken as well as written English. 

Reading 

Reading, program number 1013 from 
Centurion Software, is subtitled Master- 
ing S Basic Word Attack Skills. On the 
cover of the package, we read that 
"reading skill is dependent on the 
ability to apply the primary Word 
Attack rules of the English language un- 
til those rules can be applied automati- 
cally ..." We were puzzled by the 
reference to word attack skills and, since 
our education credits are well over a de- 
cade old, decided to ask around to see if 
the designation was a newcomer to the 
lexicon of educational jargon. We asked 
several people we thought ought to 
know, and not one showed a glimmer of 
recognition, so we called Centurion and 
asked a woman who sounded as though 
she thought she knew. She defined word 
attack skills as those skills one uses to 
attack words. We thought of offering her 
a definition of tautology, but gave up 
with a simple sigh instead. 

Be word attack skills what they may, 
Reading is an interesting package that 
focuses on the components of words. 
Vowel sounds, consonant blends, com- 
pound words, affixes, and syllable count- 
ing are drilled in a no-nonsense format 

66 



■miMm«MimiwiraiiuMiiMffliumifliWNiMiiiui| 

MASTERING S BASIC SKILLS LESSON 1 

MIXED UOUEL SOUNDS 

a ua.KnairarniM.iiMii'tf null ■>»■>«■ >jii>ri.ii;rrii|jia>i.>:b 



scrap 



nuiaaiaataaiautauxaiflawaaiaaiiMauwauaiaaiflainainauamataaiiiaaiaaiaamHiaiii 

IF WORD HAS ONLY ONE SOUNDED UOWEL. 
PRESS 'S' IF UOUEL SOUND IS SHORT 
OR 'L' IF VOWEL SOUND IS LONG. IF 
WORD HAS BOTH SHORT AND LONG 
SOUNDED UOWELS. PRESS '2' . 




ifiiiiiiiriiwiaiiiiiiuiiywiutiininrniiiiaiwiiyiaiiiairauiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiaiiai*! 



IP- 




SOFTWARE 
EVALUATION 



Betsy Staples 



that concentrates on letters rather than 
detailed graphics or catchy tunes (the 
closest thing to graphics the program 
offers is a small smiley face that flashes 
when you proffer the correct answer). 

The only frills this program includes 
are in the menus, of which there are 
three. The first menu that appears on the 
screen is the operating menu, which asks 
for the student's name and the "printer 
code." If you read the lines at the bot- 
tom of the screen, you will learn that to 
enter either of these bits of information 
you must press the period key and then 
enter the name or code ("Contact Cen- 
turion for the correct code for your 
printer"). If you fail to notice the 
instructions, you will find yourself in the 
content menu before you can say "user- 
friendly." 

The content menu allows you to 
choose one of the five subjects; a lesson 
number; a set of 10, 20, or 30 problems; 
and a specific series of problems, if 
desired. With the response menu, you 
can set the program for study or test 
mode depending on whether you want 
problems to be repeated until they are 
answered correctly or not. You can also 
decide whether or not to control the 
amount of time a student is given to 



Reading 

answer. If you decide to limit the re- 
sponse time, you can specify a period of 
from 1 to 99 seconds. And you can spec- 
ify whether or not you want a tone to 
indicate right and wrong answers. To 
make changes in the content and 
response menus, you must press the pe- 
riod, followed by the C to flip through 
the choices. 

The drills themselves are simple, 
especially when compared with the con- 
figuration exercise set forth in the intro- 
ductory menus. In Mixed Vowel Sounds, 
you look at a word displayed in hi-res 
characters and press one of three keys to 
indicate if it contains a long vowel, a 
short vowel, or one of each. In Mixed 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Reading 

Type: Educational program 

Suggested Age: Grades 3 to 5 

System: Apple 

Format: Disk 

Summary: Down-to-earth drill and 

practice 
Price: $39.95 
Manufacturer: 

Centurion Industries 

1526 Main St. 

Redwood City, CA 94063 

(415) 364-9456 



October 1 984 o Creative Computing 




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Making you the best. 

CIRCLE 112 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



EDUCATION 



Replace the incorrect verb forms in the 
following sentences writing the correct 
form at the end of the sentence. If the 
sentence is correct, write "correct." 



The visitors from England have 
uent hoaa. gone 

6. I brung my friend a gift from Paris. 

BRANG 

'Brought" is the correct verb form. I 



Principal Parts of Verbs 




Identify the adjectives in the follow- 
ing sentences. Indicate whether the 
adjective is | descriptive, I limitir 
or I a proper adjective. 

Example She wore a red hat. 
Answer R 

7. The doctor recommended a Turkish 
bath. Answer; C 



The cat's pajamas! ' 



..■■■-■h. 



Position blends, you specify whether a 
consonant blend is at the beginning or 
the end of the word. 

Identifying Compound Words asks you 
to decide whether a word is compound 
or not, and Identifying Affixes asks you 
to identify plural, prefix, and suffix 
modifiers — again, simply by pressing a 
key. Counting Syllables, as the names 
implies, requires that you press the key 
number that corresponds to the number 
of syllables in the object word. 

No response requires more than a sin- 
gle keystroke, so knowledge of the key- 
board is not necessary, and feedback is 
instantaneous and unobtrusive. At the 
end of each lesson, you see your score 
broken down into the number of each 
type of answer correct out of number 
presented and the total elapsed time. 

The program includes 1000 words, 
but there is no provision for adding your 
own. Presumably, if your attacks on the 
included words are successful, you can 
feel confident in your mastery of the 
word attack skill and move on to other 
things. 

Documentation 

The documentation for the program is 
a 7" x 18* card printed on both sides 
and folded into three sections. Most of 
the text on the card is devoted to operat- 
ing instructions (how to use the menus) 
and suggestions for mastering the sub- 
ject matter. Also included are a list of 
the 1000 vocabulary words and a short 
catalog of Centurion products. 

The style of the documentation is a bit 
pedantic — "mastery of the subject has 
been attained and the skill involved is 
permanently internalized into memory" 
— but we had no trouble understanding 
any of the information in it. When we 
called Centurion about the title, the 
woman to whom we spoke volunteered 
that some users had complained about 

October 1 984 e Creative Computing 



the documentation, causing Centurion 
to print a supplementary sheet, which 
we assume addresses these complaints. 

The exercise themselves are self- 
documenting — at least the first one in 
each lesson is. You get complete instruc- 
tions with the first question, but for each 
succeeding question, you must remem- 
ber that you press 1 if the vowel has a 
long sound, s if the sound is short, and 2 
if the word contains both long and short 
sounds or whatever the pattern is for 
that exercise. 

Summary 

Reading is a serious, businesslike, drill 
and practice program. It makes no 
attempt to explain the subjects being 
studied and is totally devoid of cuteness. 
It will not win any awards for innovation 
or design, but neither will it be accused 
of unsound pedagogy or inaccurate 
presentation. It is a safe, solid program. 

Although it could easily be used by 



J 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Principal Parts of Verbs 

Type: Educational program 

Suggested Age: Junior high 

System: Apple 

Format: Disk 

Summary: Basic drill and practice in 

an unexciting format 
Price: $24.95 
Manufacturer: 

Intellectual Software 

798 North Ave. 

Bridgeport, CT 06606 

(800) 232-2224 

(203) 335-0906 




Adjectives 

individual students in the home, it is 
probably better suited to use in the class- 
room. The ability to add extra words 
limits the flexibility of the program a bit, 
and although 1000 words seems like a 
great many, we suspect that it will not 
take students too long to master them. 
A feature that will make Reading 
especially attractive to classroom teach- 
ers is the compact coding that allows the 
entire program to reside in memory, so 
that once it is loaded, the disk can be re- 
moved and stored safely. 

For down-to-earth practice in attack- 
ing words, grab your sword and do bat- 
tle with Reading on your Apple. 

CIRCLE 41 3 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Principal Parts of Verbs 

Principal Parts of Verbs is number 12 
in the Practical Grammar series from 
Intellectual Software. Like Reading, it is 
a no frills package that offers valuable 
practice in an often neglected subject 
area. 

There is nothing visually or aurally 
exciting about this program — unless, of 
course, you are inspired by the Apple II 
character set. You start by typing in 
your name and then move on to a menu, 
which lists the 10 modules included in 
the program: basic Forms of Verbs, 
Troublesome Verbs, Exercise 1-2, Ex- 
ercise 2-3, Lie and Lay, Sit and Set, Rise 
and Raise, Assignment 1-2, Assignment 
2-3, and Progress Test. 

The modules are numbered in 
increments of five, starting with L10, 
and to select one you must type in the 
entire three-digit code number of your 
choice. This is not a friendly approach, 
and we wonder why a simple 1 through 
10 numbering system would not have 
done as well. 

Your module selected, you move into 
the program itself where you are first 



EDUCATION 



presented with a paragraph explaining 
the concept under consideration. At the 
end of the paragraph (while the para- 
graph is still on the screen) you are 
drilled on the information you have just 
learned. The first questions are usually 
multiple choice; later you may be asked 
to test your knowledge by typing a spe- 
cific requested form of a verb, i.e., past 
tense plus present participle. 

If your answer is correct, you are so 
informed, and a small solid square 
appears on the right side of the screen to 
tell you that hitting any key will allow 
you to go on. We found this convention 
difficult to get used to and wasted quite 
a bit of time staring at the screen waiting 
for the next question to appear when we 
had simply forgotten to press a key. 

If your answer is wrong, the program 
tells you what the correct answer is and 
offers a brief explanation. You are never 
told that the answer is wrong. 

The drill sections offer quite a few dif- 
ferent types of questions, and while most 
of them were not difficult to figure out, a 
few required several tries before we mas- 
tered the exact format. In the section on 
lie and lay, for example, we were asked 
to "Type the correct form then indicate 
whether the sentence requires the verb A 
lie or B lay." Faced with sentence 
"Mother (has laid, had lain) on that 
couch often"[the lazy slug!], we were not 
sure whether to include the auxiliary 
verb has in our answer, and then we 
typed lie instead of the code letter A, 
resulting in the recording of an incorrect 
response in the management section of 
the program. 

Upon completion of each module, the 
program displays a small chart which 
tells you the number of items in the 
module, the number you got correct, 
and the percentage you got correct. 

This package definitely has some 
rough spots, but the most serious flaw in 
it is the practice of displaying incorrect 
forms. When a choice must be made, 
instead of providing the present tense 
form of the verb (throw, for example) in 
a sentence like "The boy — the ball," the 
program shows you a totally incorrect — 
often nonexistent — word like "throwed." 
We think this is a very poor practice. 

Management 

For an additional $10, you can buy 
any of the Intellectual Software gram- 
mar series disks with a management sys- 
tem. This is virtually transparent to the 
student user and provides the parent or 
teacher with a method of tracking the 
progress of up to 10 students. Unless you 
are a classroom teacher who plans to 
work with only one small group of stu- 
dents at a time, however, this bare bones 
record keeping feature is probably not 
worth the extra money. 

70 



Documentation 

The manual for the program is an 18- 
page small format booklet devoted 
primarily to listing the packages in the 
series. There are also short sections on 
running the program and the manage- 
ment system. 

The booklet does refer to "the Prac- 
tical Grammar texts included with Re- 
view and Comprehensive Grammar 
packages," but since we did not receive 
either of these packages, we cannot com- 
ment on it. We can say that the docu- 
mentation that we received rates as 
barely adequate. 

We would also like to refer the writer 
of the booklet, whose repeated use of 
construction such as "... enter his or 
her name exactly as they did the first 



There is nothing logical 

about the past 

participles of most of 

our irregular verbs, 

and the only way to 

learn them is to 

practice using them 

over and over. 



time they used the disk" gave us serious 
misgivings about the entire program be- 
fore we even booted the disk, to Intellec- 
tual Software's program number 7, 
Agreement of Pronoun with Antecedent. 

Summary 

Principal Parts of Verbs lacks the pro- 
fessional polish that we have come to 
expect in educational programs. If the 
copyright notice had not been dated 
1984, we might have suspected that the 
disk had fallen into a time warp; it is a 
program that might have represented 
the state of the art in 1978. 

Although it does offer brief explana- 
tions of the topics being drilled, we con- 
sider it primarily drill and practice. We 
do, however, think that principal parts 
of verbs need to be drilled. There is 
nothing logical about the past participles 
of most of our irregular verbs, and the 
only way to learn them is to practice us- 
ing them over and over. For this, as we 
know, computers are well suited. 

Principal Parts of Verbs is a very basic 
sort of program, and if you happen to be 
searching for a program to drill the basic 
skills it treats, it should be adequate. It is 
also relatively inexpensive if you don't 
add the management system. So, if you 
don't mind students being shown 



incorrect verb forms. Principal Parts of 
Verbs may be a cost-effective way to 
provide them with practice in some 
important skills. 

CIRCLE 41 4 ON READER SERVICE CARD 

Adjectives 

Adjectives: Adding New Ideas to Nouns 
and Pronouns, although a member of the 
Intellectual Software family of grammar 
programs, has quite a bit more going for 
it than Principal Parts of Verbs. Like 
Verbs, it is a no frills, less than pro- 
fessional effort. Unlike Verbs, it has no 
fatal flaw that we were able to discern. 

The modules offered on the main 
menu include: Introduction, Identify 
Adjectivies, Nouns Modified, Kinds of 
Adjectives, Kinds-Adjectives II, 
Position-Adjectives, Nouns as Adjec- 
tives, Comparison of Adjectives, Irregu- 
lar Adjectives, and Review. The 
selection process is the same as for 
Verbs. 

Again, the program presents an 
explanatory paragraph and goes on to 
test your mastery of the information pre- 
sented with simple exercises. Initially, 
for example, you see a noun modified by 
an adjective, and you must type the 
adjective. Later, you are asked to pick 
the adjective out of an entire sentence. 

As you progress through the program, 
you learn that there are different kinds 
of adjectives — limiting, descriptive, 
predicate, et al. — and you are required 
to identify them as they appear in con- 
text. In the sections on comparison of 
adjectives and irregular adjectives, you 
just fill in the blanks: good, — .worst. 

Correct answers are rewarded with 
one of a seemingly endless supply of 
adjectives and phrases: Cool!, Beautiful, 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Adjectives: Adding New 

Ideas to Nouns and Pronouns 
Type: Educational program 
Suggested Age: Junior high 
System: Apple, IBM PC 
Format: Disk 
Summary: Efficient, if 

unimaginative, drill on types 

and uses of adjectives 
Price: $19.95 
Manufacturer: 

Intellectual Software 

798 North Ave. 

Bridgeport, CT 06606 

(800) 232-2224 

(203) 335-0906 



October 1984 c Creative Computing 



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CIRCLE 188 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



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EDUCATION 



I can't fool you, and so on. As above, the 
response to an incorrect answer is sim- 
ply the correct answer. 

The documentation is the same sort of 
amateurish booklet provided with Verbs, 
and unless you have an IBM PC and 
need help transferring DOS to the pro- 
gram disk, you will find little of use in it. 

The management system is the same 
as the one reviewed above — save your 
money and let the kids record their 
scores on a piece of paper. 

Summary 

Teaching students to identify and use 
the parts of speech correctly is a task 
that has been neglected by contemporary 
teachers of English — partly, perhaps, be- 
cause it is neither an easy nor an 



We feel quite confident 

recommending 

Adjectives to those 

who share our 

conviction that learning 

the mechanics of the 

English language is 

still worthwhile. 



especially interesting topic to teach. As 
we have said before, we regret this trend 
and are happy to find the occasional 
computer program that recognizes the 
value of some of the "old fashioned" 
educational concepts. 

Unfortunately, the format of Adjec- 
tives is uninspiring. It is also inoffensive, 
however. We prefer straightforward, 
unpretentious text drill and practice to 
some of the hokey game formats that 
manufacturers think secondary school 
students will tolerate. 

We feel quite confident recommend- 
ing Adjectives to parents and teachers 
who share our conviction that learning 
the mechanics of the English language is 
still a worthwhile occupation. ■ 

CIRCLE 414 ON READER SERVICE CARD 






With the Mind Prober" you can. In just minutes you can have 
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CIRCLE 148 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




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CIRCLE 161 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



75 



EDUCATION 



Software for Learning 
Mathematics 



We evaluate 25 software packages 
and find both winners and lemons. 



In the 18 writeups in this roundup, you 
will find evaluations of 25 packages con- 
sisting of more than 40 individual programs, 
all aimed at one or another facet of mathe- 
matics learning. 

The overall quality of educational 
packages has steadily improved over the 
years; however, there are still a disturbing 
number of packages on the market that 
can be only described as "swillware." Also, 
we keep hoping to see more innovation 
rather than just another batch of arith- 
metic drill and practice programs in a 
different guise. 

In keeping with our policy of running 
absolutely honest reviews, we have called 
a spade a spade and a lemon a lemon. We 
found excellent packages from both large 
publishers as well as small, "unknown" 
vendors, evidence that the software 
business is still a wide open field. Some of 
the worst programs had the brightest 
packaging, proving, again, that you can't 
judge a book by its cover. 

Math Blaster 

Math Blaster has been on the educa- 
tional programs best seller list for months 
and months, and with good reason. It is 
an interesting and motivational approach 
to arithmetic drill and practice with some 
important extras— in particular, drill on 
fractions and decimals, and the ability to 
enter your own problems. 

The package comes on two disks, a 

76 



3KSt 




SOFTWARE 
EVALUATION 



David H. Ahl 



program disk and data disk. The data 
disk contains more than 600 math facts/ 
problems: 20 to 30 in each of five skill 
levels for each of five operations (addition, 




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J. J. J. JO. 



Scar* 100 Uatiw 110 Hi«h 2000 

Math Blaster 

subtraction, multiplication, division, and 
fractions/decimals). 

The Math Blaster package includes four 
types of exercises on the disk. The first is 
called Look and Learn; it displays each 
math fact. e.g.. 4 + 6 = 10 in each file. 
Each fact stays on the screen for four 



seconds, although by pressing the arrows, 
you can increase or decrease the display 
time. 

Build Your Skill presents the math facts 
as problems (4 + 6 = ?) in groups of 
ten. At the end of a group, you are pre- 
sented with your total elapsed time to 
answer all the questions, number correct, 
and percentage score. 

Challenge Yourself is a similar type of 
exercise, except that an operand is the 
missing piece (4 + ? = 10). 

Math Blaster itself is an arcade type 
game in which you are presented with a 
problem at the bottom of the screen and 
four possible answers overhead. Using the 
keyboard or a joystick, you must position 
a little man over the mouth of the cannon 
under the correct answer. Pressing the 
fire button causes the man to be hurled — 
human cannonball style— at the answer 
which bursts like a balloon when he hits 
it. 

At the left is a seal bouncing a ball on 
its nose; this serves as a timer. You must 
shoot the man before the ball returns to 
the seal's nose, a considerable challenge 
if you choose a high playing speed. Also, 
at higher speeds the problem and answers 
are displayed for only a second or two 
rather than remaining on the screen. 

You must also watch the descending 
balloon on the right side; if it hits the 
needle on the ground it pops and the 
game ends. You can bounce the balloon 
back up as it nears the ground, but it 

October 1984 * Creative Computing 



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EDUCATION 




Tri-Math: Alien Intruder 

costs you precious time. 

At the end of a game, you are shown 
the total score which is a function of the 
problems you got correct and the speed 
of play. 

Entering a new data file with problems 
that may be particularly troublesome to 
you (or your child) is as easy as simply 
typing the problem itself. In addition, the 
file editor includes a mini command set 
(edit, list, insert, delete, save, get, print, 
clear, quit, and help). 

The program is well-designed and graph- 
ically appealing, and it should hold the 
attention of children in the age range of 6 
to 12. All in all, Math Blaster is a real 
blast! 

Tri-Math 

As its name implies, Tri-Math includes 
three games that provide drill in arithmetic 
and problem solving. 

Alien Intruder is a game in which you 
must answer simple arithmetic problems. 
A problem appears in the center of your 
circular spaceship. Each wing contains a 
number, one of which is the right answer. 
Using the arrow keys, you must select the 
wing on which the right answer is displayed 
before the buzzing alien (looks like a 
spinning spider or circular saw blade) lands 
on that wing. If you select the correct 
answer, that wing is filled with anti-alien 
juice and you move one step closer to 
warding off the attack. If you select the 
wrong wing or do not get to it in time, the 
alien eats it. 

At the end of a round, a graphic sum- 
mary of the score is shown. When you 
begin, you specify what type of problems 
you want and the number of wings you 
want on your ship. You can also use the 
Pre-Set Control Option to make the game 
easier or harder by changing the speed of 
the alien and choosing easier or harder 
problems. 

Digitosaurus is a game in which you 
must help a creature get older and wiser 
by choosing the arithmetic expression on 
the screen with the largest value. After 
you choose an expression, you must 
evaluate it. Hence, if you choose 235 + 
90, you must enter the value 325. 

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Tri-Math: Math Mansion 

Although it may seem that you are only 
doing one problem of the three, to choose 
the right expression, you must either cal- 
culate or estimate the value of all three. 
We like this type of game since it rein- 
forces both calculating and estimating skills. 
As with Alien Intruder, you can use the 
preset option to make the problems easier 
or harder. 

At the outset we must confess that Math 
Mansion was our favorite program of the 
three. It is a delightful combination of a 
graphics adventure game with arithmetic 
drill. In Math Mansion, you start in the 
library of a 14-room house. To enter 
another room, you must complete an arith- 
metic expression such as 78 = 13. Note 

that you must supply both the operator 
and an operand. In most cases, there is 
more than one way to complete the ex- 
pression; in the example, both 78 • 65 
= 13 and 78 + 6 = 13 would work. Thus, 
the program is suitable for children with 
a wide range of math skills. 

As with "real" adventure games, many 
of the rooms contain something that is 
necessary to solve a later dilemma (for 
example, the candle scares the bats), but 
to pick up an object, again, you must 
complete a math expression correctly. You 
are not penalized for an incorrect answer; 
you just stay in one spot. 

There are many ways of playing the 
game. A floor plan is in the instruction 
manual; use it as you play and you can 
get out in 15 or 16 moves. Wander around 
aimlessly and it could take 60 or 70 moves. 
Or you can systematically keep track with 
pencil and paper. How you play is up to 




Math Maze 



you, but by the time you get out, you will 
have learned a little bit about adventuring 
and a great deal about math expressions. 
All in all, a very nice package. 

Math Maze 

When we first read the instructions, we 
were tempted to say that Math Maze is 
just another— ho, hum— arithmetic drill 
and practice game. And in a sense, it is. 
But in another sense, it is far more because 
it provides a high level of motivation that 
keeps kids coming back for more. 

To play the game, you move a fly 
through a maze to pick up numbers to 
answer a math problem on the lower left 
of the screen. You may choose to do 
problems of addition, subtraction, multi- 
plication, or division (only one operation 
per set of ten problems). You select one 
of three levels of problem difficulty. For 
example, in addition drill, you may select 
sums up to 10, sums up to 20, or metal 
math (sums with a carry). 

The disk contains 40 mazes of varying 
degrees of difficulty. Furthermore, you 
can change these mazes to suit yourself, 
or you can design your own mazes which 
can then be stored on a data disk for 
future use. To make things even more 
interesting, there are four maze skill levels: 
1.) no hazards, 2.) with a spider, 3.) in- 
visible walls, and 4.) spider and invisible 
walls. The game can be played from the 
keyboard or with a joystick; at higher 
skill levels, a joystick is almost mandatory. 

The instant a new problem appears, a 
bonus point display starts counting down 
from 100. When you complete the problem 
correctly, you get as many points as are 
then showing on the display. However, 
you lose points for an incorrect answer or 
for being captured by the spider. 

From this description, it should be ap- 
parent that Math Maze is an interesting 
game in its own right. The 40 mazes, 
coupled with those you may choose to 
create yourself, will keep youngsters 
coming back for months, honing their 
arithmetic skills in the process. The only 
limitation is that the problems tend to be 
on the simple side; thus we can't see it 
being used much beyond age 10. 

79 



EDUCATION 



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Success With Math 

Success With Math 

The 'Success With Math series from 
CBS Software consists of eight packages 
ranging from Addition and Subtraction 
(grades 1 to 4) to Quadratic Equations 
(grades 9 to 12). We used four of the 
packages, but we will just describe 
Fractions: Addition and Subtraction as 
being representative of the series. (For a 
detailed description of the higher level 
packages in the series, see Creative Com- 
puting, April 1984.) 

The program provides drill and practice 
in addition and subtraction of fractions 
with unequal denominators. At the start, 
you select either addition or subtraction 
and the number of problems you wish to 
do. If you wish, a tutorial set of instructions 
will "walk you through" a sample problem. 

As each problem is presented, you must 
decide upon the next step (change to least 
common denominator, add, or reduce). 
(In subtraction, there are four possible 
steps.) The program then takes you step 
by step through the operation. If you 
make a mistake, the program gives you a 
hint the first time and the correct answer 
the second time. 

After each problem, you get a mini- 
summary of errors in procedure, compu- 
tation, and led, along with an encouraging 
remark. At the end of each set of problems, 
you get a similar summary for the entire 
set. 

These packages have no graphics, no 
sound effects, and no cutesy frills— just a 
good, comprehensive, self-paced approach 
to learning. Perhaps most important, the 
user always succeeds in solving the problem 
and knows exactly where errors have been 
made. 

Path Tactics 

Path Tactics is one in the first series of 
five consumer-oriented software packages 
from MECC. In case you are not familiar 
with the acronym, MECC stands for the 
Minnesota Educational Computer Con- 
sortium, one of the oldest and largest 
educational computer using groups in the 
world. 

Long-time readers of Creative will recall 
that several vendors, including Creative 



Path Tactics 

Computing Software, used to sell MECC 
packages. These consumer packages, how- 
ever, are completely new, although they 
are based on the same proven educational 
approaches. 

The first five MECC consumer titles 
are a refreshing change from "more of 
the same" that we see so often. In addition 
to Path Tactics, the titles are: The Friendly 
Computer (an introduction for children 5 
to 8), Early Addition, Problem-Solving 
Strategies (logical thinking for ages 9-15), 
and Mind Puzzles (more logical thinking). 

Path Tactics is a game designed to teach 
basic arithmetic skills. You may play against 
the computer or a friend. You specify 
what skill you want to practice (addition, 
division, etc.). Each player selects one of 
seven robots to make his moves on the 
field of play. 

The playing area is constructed of five 
girders with 20 spaces on each ( 100 total). 
On each turn, you are given two or three 
numbers with which you must form an 
expression (4 + 6) and then provide the 
answer. Depending upon the exercise, 
either the second number of the expression 
or the answer is the number of spaces 
that your robot advances. 

Eight spaces on the girders are marked 
with an "X." If you land on one of these, 
you drop down a level. Also, if you land 
on your opponent, you send him back ten 
spaces. Hence, strategy is a factor as well 
as completing the problems correctly. If 
you miss a problem, you are told the 
correct answer, but you don't get to move. 

The animation of the robots is delight- 
ful, although after a while, the sound gets 
a bit tedious (there is a program option to 
turn it off). The program also has a "pro- 
gram manager" option that lets a parent 
select the type of problems that are avail- 
able and allows resetting the winner's list 
(humans only —the computer does not get 
its name on the winner's list). 

We liked this program very much al- 
though we recommend it for two human 
players rather than a human and the com- 
puter. In ten games, the computer won 
every one even though we didn't make a 
single mistake; that can be mighty frus- 
trating for a child. 



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Teasers by Tobbs 

Teasers by Tobbs 

Teasers by Tobbs provides the old 
standby, arithmetic practice (in addition 
and multiplication only) in the form of a 
logic game. 

Tobbs is a friendly, androgynous char- 
acter who lays out a 3 by 3 grid of numbers. 
In the upper left is a sign (+ or x) which 
indicates the type of problem. The game 
can be played by from one to four players 
each of whom, in turn, must determine 
the number that goes in the box in which 
Tobbs is standing. Numbers in the top 
row are always added to (or multiplied 
by) numbers in the left column to fill in 
the boxes. For example, in the illustration, 
Tobbs is standing in a box that requires 
39 to be added to 46 for a sum of 85. 

There are six skill levels. In the first 
three levels, the top and side numbers 
simply get larger, while in levels 4 to 6 
numbers may be missing from the top 
row and left column. This can get quite 
tricky forcing you, in some cases, to solve 
for the entire grid just to fill in a single 
box. 

There is no timer in the program, but 
solo players may wish to see how many 
points they can accumulate in a given 
time, say 15 minutes, and try to beat this 
in future games. The game is suitable for 
ages 8 and older and should provide many 
hours of learning fun. 



Math Man 

The Math Man package contains two 
games. Math Man and Self Test (which 
presents the same problems as Math Man 
but without the game elements). 

The opening screens ask you to select 
(using joystick or keyboard) which game 
you wish, the difficulty level ( 1 to 12), and 
speed (four speeds). 

In the Math Man game, you find your- 
self on a system of girders and ladders. At 
the top left is a target number (say, 83) 
and at the top right, a "total" number 
(say, 28). Around the girders are boxes, 
each with an arithmetic operation ( + , -, 
x, and + ) and a number emblazoned on 
it. 

Your job is to maneuver Math Man 
around the girders and pick up the appro- 
October 1984 c Creative Computing 



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priate boxes to turn the total number into 
the target number. For example, to turn 
28 into 83. we used -7 (28 - 7 = 21 ), x4 (21 
x 4 = 84), +4 and -5. A slowly rising paint 
bucket on the right side acts as a timer. If 
it reaches the top before you have cal- 
culated the target number, it overturns 
and drenches the screen in paint, ending 
your turn. 

We found the best playing strategy was 
to study the problem before pressing the 
spacebar to start the turn. Once the bucket 
starts to rise, it is rather nerve racking to 
deduce a strategy and maneuver Math 
Man simultaneously. 

At lower speeds, either keyboard or 
joystick is acceptable; at higher speeds. 



EDUCATION h 

players will surely want to use a joystick. 

Completing a problem successfully 
results in a message "GOT IT" and a few 
musical notes. We think that a successful 
player deserves more of a reward than 
that, perhaps at the end of a round of 
three problems. 

The game is well designed. Math Man 
is responsive, and the game can be inter- 
rupted to change the speed or level. It is a 
step beyond arithmetic drill and a good 
prelude to algebra. We recommend it for 
ages 9 to 14. 

Flower Power 

No, Flower Power is not a 60's trivia 
game; it is yet another arithmetic drill 
and practice game. It is called Flower 
Power because your reward for answering 
a problem correctly is a bright flower in 
your garden at the bottom of the screen. 
An incorrect answer results in — what 
else?— a weed. 

After loading the program, it asks for 
your first name, the type of numbers with 
which you wish to work (whole numbers, 
fractions, decimals, or fraction/decimal 
conversions), and then the type of operation 
( + .-.x, +). 

Ten problems are then presented one 
by one in the center of the screen. Your 




Flower Power 

score depends both upon the answer you 
give and the elapsed time. If you answer 
the early (simple) problems quickly, the 
program adjusts the difficulty level up. 
However, if you miss a problem, the level 
is lowered slightly. Thus, 'he program 
should generally provide a sufficient (but 
not frustrating) level of challenge. 

Although the level was self-adjusting, 
we were not particularly captivated by 
the program; watching flowers sprout gets 
old fast. Nor did we like the fact that 
fractions are written in a straight line 
(2/3); yes. this is necessary in typing, but 
most children expect them to be written 
with the numerator over the denominator. 
We also think that the program should 




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CIRCLE 169 ON READER SERVICE CARD 

October 1 984 ° Creative Computing 



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Race Car 'Rithmetic 

accept decimal answers to four or five 
places; after all, if a child calculates the 
value of 3/7 to 0.42857 he should not be 
told that is wrong because the program is 
looking for 0.429. 

Scores are automatically retained on 
the disk and may be viewed, printed, or 
erased from the included utility program, 
Report. 

Race Car Rithmetic 
and Ships Ahoy 

Race Car Rithmetic and Ships Ahoy 
are— you guessed it— drill and practice 
programs in the four basic arithmetic 
operations. 

In Race Car Rithmetic, up to four 
players may race, although we found that 
it was rather boring for just a single player. 
Prior to the start of the race, each player 
enters the type of problems he wants to 
do, his skill level (1 to 3) and how many 
seconds he wants for each answer; this 
allows players of different ages and abilities 
to compete fairly. 

Then, as problems appear, players take 
turns in answering. An incorrect answer 
or no answer within the time limit causes 
the car to move backward or the player 
to lose a turn. Unfortunately, the program 
messages to players are divided into short 
phrases, only one of which appears on 
the screen at a time; RETURN must be 
pressed to see each phrase in a sentence, 
a rather cumbersome procedure. It takes 
13 correct answers to inch your car across 
the screen to the finish line. 

Any player who gets a score of 90% or 
better (0 or 1 wrong) is given an opportunity 
to play a short arcade-style race game, a 
reward that should provide good incentive 
for completing the rather boring problem 
part of the program. 

Ships Ahoy has two games which pro- 
vide math drill for solo players. In the 
first, correct answers propel a ship safely 
(and slowly) across the screen similar to 
the race car game. In the second. Mine 
Sweeper, you must select one of four 
mines that contains the correct answer to 
the problem shown overhead. 

A third game on the disk is just for fun 
and lets you maneuver around an under- 

82 



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water maze collecting treasures within a 
one-minute time period. A fourth "game" 
is actually a sort of electronic etch-a-sketch. 
All the games on these disks are rather 
slow paced and punctuated by overly long 
musical interludes. Non-competitive child- 
ren who prefer a leisurely pace may like 
them, but they lack the excitement and 
motivation of some of the other offerings 
on the market. 

Starship Alert and 
others from the Wizard 

A series of five math packages has been 
released by The Wizard. 

Fraction Tutorial makes extensive use 
of pie charts and grids to explain how to 
simplify fractions and perform arithmetic 
operations on them. The graphics are fine, 
although we were somewhat put off by 
the NOPE, TRY AGAIN message that 
appears after each incorrect response. 

This package is aimed at classroom use 
and has an extensive class management 
and password system built in. If your name 
isn't in the class roster, you can't use the 
disk. However, we don't think that home 
users should have to go through the cum- 
bersome procedure of building a class file 
to use the program. (Moreover, on one of 
our disks, this procedure did not work.) 

Starship Alert is a game which provides 
drill on various operations with fractions. 
In the game, you are defending a city 
from alien attack. You do so by solving 
problems (say 4 1/2 + 1 1/4 = ?). Four 
answers are shown below; you must type 
the letter of the correct answer. If you 




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Starship Alert 



Think Tank 

select the right answer, the alien space- 
craft is blasted from the sky. The graphics 
are excellent, and the sound effects okay. 

However, we are not enthusiastic about 
the game. Why not? Except at the lowest 
speed, it is virtually unplayable. Second, 
since time is so important, you are tempted 
to look for an answer that "looks right" 
instead of making sure it is right. For 
example, on the illustration, a quick glance 
suggests that the answer is D; of course, if 
there was another 5 and something fraction, 
you would have a more difficult time. 
Hence, the drill really boils down to one 
of estimation rather than calculation; we 
feel this loses much of the educational 
benefit. We also didn't like the fact that if 
you miss a problem, the program does 
not indicate the correct answer. 

Another package in the Wizard series. 
Think Tank, presents arithmetic problems 
in a series of graphics settings. The concept 
is interesting, but the animation sequences 
tend to drag on. Moreover, the difficulty 
level is not user-selectable and ranges all 
over the place. Thus, while the package 
lists "grades 4 to 9," only an eighth or 
ninth grader would be able to play the 
game without getting very frustrated. 

Sorry, Wizard, nice try, but your products 
just don't make it. 

Exploring Tables 
and Graphs 

There are two packages in the Exploring 
Tables and Graphs series, Level 1 is for 
ages 7 to 10, and Level 2 is for ages 10 
and up. The packages are substantially 
similar so we'll describe only Level 1. 

Upon loading the disk, you are presented 
with a menu of five choices: getting started, 
tables, bar graphs, picture graphs, and 
area (pie) graphs. "Getting started" simply 
tells you how to use the keyboard and 
move around the program. Each of the 
graph sections allows you to choose a 
short verbal tutorial, a game ("play and 
learn"), or examples. The flip side of the 
disk lets you make, save, and print your 
own tables and graphs. 

Once you know how the keys work, the 
best place to start is with the game. The 
games are quite simple and can be played 

October 1 984 c Creative Computing 



Can Your Word Pr< 
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Exploring Tables and Graphs 

with just two keys (one game is a form of 
Breakout in a circle, while another requires 
you to open a parachute at the right 
moment to hit a target). The purpose of 
the games is to get a few numerical values 
for plotting on a graph. Hence, it is best 
to play at least three or four games. The 
program then takes your scores and puts 
them in a table; it asks you to provide the 
labels (name and date). 

The program then draws a graph of the 
results and asks you to identify the longest 
bar or biggest wedge. If you make a 
mistake, the program gives you a mild 
Brooklyn razz and won't accept it. 

If you don't want to generate data by 
playing the game, you can go directly to 
the examples where you will find "in- 
teresting stuff" such as the results of frog 
jumping contests, weather data, and lengths 
of the rivers of the world. There are two 
or three examples for each type of graph. 

As mentioned, on Side 2 of the disk is a 
program for making your own graphs. It 
is completely menu driven and extremely 
easy to use, although you will have an 
easier time if you read the six pages in the 
manual describing these procedures. 

In addition to the double-sided disk, 
the package includes a 32-page instruction 
manual and 12 activity masters for repro- 
duction in schools or for individual use at 
home. 

All in all. Exploring Tables and Graphs 
is an outstanding package and on the 
same professional level as we have come 
to expect from Weekly Reader Family 
Software. 

Graphing Equations 

Graphing Equations is a disk containing 
an introductory section and four diverse 
programs. 

The first program. Linear and Quadratic 
Graphs presents graphs on a grid (-10 to 
10) for which you must determine the 
equations. At the start, you have a choice 
of five types of equations: lines, parabolas, 
circles, ellipses, and hyperbolas. You also 
have a choice of beginning with easy 
problems and working up to the hard 
ones, beginning anywhere in the list, or 
practicing problems of mixed difficulty. 

October 1984 - Creative Computing 




Graphing Equations 



The program then selects a graph and 
plots it. This target graph is shown in one 
color, while each equation you write is 
graphed in a second color. You can make 
successive tries to see how changes in the 
equation change the graph. When your 
equation matches the target graph, the 
program presents another problem. 

Once you are familiar with various types 
of graphs, you will want to move on to 
Green Globs. In this game, 13 green globs 
are scattered around the grid. Your job is 
to write equations (which the program 
will draw as graphs) and try to hit all the 
globs with as few equations as possible. 
In the expert version of the game, five 
"shot absorbers" are scattered about the 
grid. Also, in this version, you are allowed 
to use trigonometric functions (alone or 
in combination with other functions). 

A second game. Tracker, requires you 
to locate linear and quadratic graphs that 
are hidden in the grid and determine their 
equations. You can use two types of "shots" 
in this game: probes and trackers. A probe 
travels along a single horizontal or vertical 
line and marks a point whenever it crosses 
the path of a hidden graph. A tracker is 
an equation which, with a bit of luck, will 
trace the path of the hidden graph. 

The last program on the disk is a general 
equation plotter which will plot practically 
any type of equation, even ones with log, 
trig, and exponential functions. 

The programs are very forgiving on 
input. For example, 3 times x can be 
written 3x (or even x3) just as it would 
appear in an algebraic equation. The 
package is well-designed and should be 
very useful to students studying equations 
and graphs. 

Pick the Numbers 

Pick the Numbers is a package of two 
games that provide practice in ordering 
decimals and fractions along a number 
line in a range of to 1 . 

In the game, you move a pointing hand 
through a field of barriers and fractions 
(or decimals or both). You must guide 
the hand to pick up the numbers while 
avoiding the barriers. To score, you must 
pick the numbers in the correct order. 




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Pick the Numbers 

For the first game, Pick It Smallest, you 
must pick the number with the smallest 
value. In Mystery Pick, you must pick the 
number represented by the question mark 
on the number line. 

If you hit a barrier, you lose a hand 
(you start with three and get a new hand 
for each 5000 points scored). The pointing 
hand moves upward on its own. You can 
start or stop it with the spacebar and 
move it left and right with the arrow keys. 
You score 100 points for each number 
picked up correctly and 500 points for 
correctly picking all the numbers in a 
round. 

There are beginner and advanced 
versions. In the beginner version, fractions 
have denominators of 2, 3, 4, or 5, while 
in the advanced version, the denominators 
range from 2 to 12, and there are more 
barriers. 

The top ten scores for each game are 
stored on the disk. The package includes 
two identical program disks— a thoughtful 
touch. We found the games were chal- 
lenging, addictive, and, not incidentally, 
helpful for learning about decimals and 
fractions. That's a winning combination! 

Algebra Word Problems 

Algebra Word Problems is the fifth disk 
in a set of five on symbols, number systems, 
and equations from Intellectual Software. 
At the outset, we should mention that 
these disks are designed for classroom 
use, although that by no means precludes 
their use at home. 

This disk contains ten lesson modules 
ranging from simple, introductory word 
problems to more complicated equations 
with two unknowns. The simpler lesson 
modules have up to ten problems with 
two or three questions per problem 
(forming the equation, reducing it, solving 
it). Later lessons have only two or three 
problems, but some of them require up to 
nine steps to solve. The program takes 
you step by step through each problem— 
no jumping to conclusions here! 

After completing a lesson, the program 
shows the number of questions that were 
correct and a percentage score. This 
summary is also shown if you break out 

85 



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Algebra Word Problems 

of a lesson by pressing ESC. 

Some questions are multiple choice while 
others require a numeric answer. An in- 
correct answer brings up an explanation 
and the question is presented again; a 
second mistake causes the correct answer 
to be shown and the program goes on to 
the next question. In general, there is 
little feedback — pro or con— except prob- 
lem explanations and a scoring summary. 

For classroom use. the disk contains a 
classroom management system that records 
the summary scores of each student on 
each lesson. 

In summary, these are no frills, no 
nonsense, solid educational programs. 

The Algebra System 

The Algebra System is a set of programs 
which gives users practice in solving certain 
types of one-variable word problems using 
the "box method." 

Upon loading the program, you select 
one of ten types of problems (three types 
of age problems, three of rate/time/dis- 
tance, two of coins, and two of invest- 
ments). There are more than 20 of each 
type for a total of more than 2000 on the 
disk— you won't get bored with this! After 
selection, the problem is presented on 
the top part of the screen, and four to six 
boxes are drawn on the bottom (see 
example). 

Since these are single variable problems, 
you are asked for the letter you wish to 
represent the variable and where you wish 
to place it. The program then asks you to 
fill in the other boxes with entries (equation 

86 



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fragments) related to the variable. If your 
response is inappropriate, the program 
offers the option that you have made a 
mistake, but it does not give you the correct 
answer. 

When all four boxes have correct entries, 
you are requested to enter one side of 
your equation. If the program judges this 
correct, you are asked for the other side. 
The computer then solves the equation, 
but you must calculate the answers to the 
originally stated word problem. Upon suc- 
cessfully doing so, you are given a short 
congratulatory message and returned to 
the problem selection menu. 

Frankly, we have never seen a program 
quite like this one. But not only is it unique, 
it is easy to use, offers exceptional edu- 
cational benefit, and is great fun. Our ap- 
plause to Elaine David for an outstanding 
package! 

Quations 

Quations is a game for one to three 
players (plus the computer) in which players 
must form equations on a Scrabble type 
of board. Scholastic terms it a "crossmath" 
game. 

At the start, you select which operations 
to use ( + , -, x, -*-, or a combination). You 
also determine a time limit for each hand. 
Each player is dealt six number tiles and 
seven operation tiles. The objective on 
each turn is to use as many tiles in your 
hand as possible, subject to the limitation 
that only one equal sign may be used. 
You get points for each number in your 
equation plus each operation. 

Players take turns forming equations 
which must, of course, intersect with one 
or more of the equations already on the 
board. Certain colored squares on the 
board double and triple the value of the 
tile or equation placed on them. 

After each turn, your hand will be re- 
plenished so you always have 13 tiles (until 
the tile pile is depleted). The game ends 
when no further equations can be formed. 
The winner is the one with the most points. 

We like Quations. The rules are easy to 
learn and, by varying the operation types 
and timer, it can be suitable for a wide 
age range (age 8 to adult). Younger players 




Quations 

will want the computer to keep track of 
scoring, while for older players, tallying 
up the score of each play is an added 
challenge (do it wrong and you get no 
points). Quato, the little androgynous 
computer player verifies all equations and 
scores, so no cheating, please. 

The Math Doctor 

The Math Doctor is an unusual program: 
indeed we knowof nootherson the market 
like it. Basically, it is a tailored diagnostic 
test on number concepts, the four arith- 
metic operations, and fractions. The test 
is geared to the grade level of the user. 

The test measures a student's mastery 
of 39 finely defined objectives such as in- 
crementing sequences, rounding numbers, 
two-digit sums with regrouping, decimal 
products, multiplying fractions, and adding 
mixed fractions with regrouping. 

The test usually takes from 20 to 45 
minutes to complete. After finishing, a 
parent or teacher (or student) can view 




NArE JESSICA 

GRA0E< 9 

HOHTH' SEPTEMBER 






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The Math Doctor 
October 1 984 c Creative Computing 



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Design a special screen 

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CIRCLE 145 ON READER SERVICE Ct 










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CIRCLE 1 1 1 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



EDUCATION h 



the evaluative results on the screen, print 
them out, or save them on a data file. 

The program does not provide any 
tutorial material or drill and practice, but 
points out areas in which either instruction 
or drill is needed. We feel that the Math 
Doctor is an excellent diagnostic tool and. 
because of its branching strategy, is much 
more efficient (and less frustrating for the 
test taker) than similar pencil-and-paper 
tests. 

Math Alert 

Math Alert is a refresher and remedial 
course in basic arithmetic operations. 
According to the instructions, "It can help 
you picture more clearly what really is 
happening in arithmetic operations." 

The disk has 13 modules ranging from 



DIVISION 

WHEN YOU Q1UI0E 18 BY 5 . YOU'RE 
FINDING HOW NflHY S'S ARE IN 18 
< THERE ORE 2 5 

OJUISIOtl OF A FRACTION BY A FRACTION 
IS THE SOME THING ..LET'S LOO* ■ 



3/4 OIUIOED BY 1/4 ■ ? 
OR... HON MANY 1/4'S ARE IN 3/4? 

THERE ARE THREE <3> 1/4'S IN 3/4 I 



Math Alert 

number facts to operations with fractions 
and decimals. Although the manual says 
you can "work at your own pace" and 
"move on by pressing the ESC key," we 
found that this did not work. Thus, you 



are confined to the rather slow pace of 
the program. 

Indeed, this was just one indication that, 
despite the good intentions of Micro 
Program Designs, the package was rather 
poorly executed. For example, the in- 
structions talk about providing "practise." 
Words continue from one line to the next 
and are broken whenever column 40 is 
reached. For example, on the end of a 
line, we find THI and on the next line. 
RTY-SEVEN. If you finish one module 
and want to go on to the next one, you 
must go through the entire five-screen 
opening dialog. Even many of the actual 
explanations were not at all clear— and 
we're not exactly math dummies. We could 
go on, but there is not much point in it. 
Our recommendation: leave this program 
on the shelf. 32 



Software for Learning Mathematics 



Name 

System 

Price 


Manufacturer 


The Algebra System 

TRS80III&4 

$219.00 

(demo disk $20.00) 


E. David & Associates 
22 Russet Lane 
Storrs. CT 06268 
(203)429-1785 


Algebra Word Problems 

Apple 
$49.95 


Intellectual Software 
798 North Ave. 
Bridgeport. CT 06606 
(203)335-0906 


Exploring Tables and Graphs 

Apple 
$34.95 


Weekly Reader Family Software 
245 Long Hill Rd. 
Middletown, CT 06457 
(203)347-7251 


Flower Power 

C64, Apple 
$39.95 


Software 

1669 Acapulco Ct. 

Petaluma. CA 94952 

(707)762-2172 


Graphing Equations 

Apple 
$60.00 


Conduit 

P.O. Box 388 

Iowa City. IA 52244 

1319)353-5789 


Math Alert 

Apple 
$29.50 


Micro Program Designs 
5440 Crestline Rd. 
Wilmington, DE 19808 
(302) 738-3798 


Math Blaster 

Apple. IBM PC. C64 
$49.95 


Davidson & Associates 
6069 Groveoak PI. #12 
Rancho Palos Verdes. CA 90274 
1213)378-7826 


The Math Doctor 

Apple. TRS-80 
$40.00 


Modern Education Corporation 
P.O. Box 721 
Tulsa. OK 74101 

(918)584-7278 


Math Man 

Apple. IBM PC. PCjr. 
$39.95 


Scholastic. Inc. 
730 Broadway 
New York, NY 10003 
(212)505-3000 



Name 

System 

Price 


Manufacturer 


Math Maze 

Apple, PCjr. C64. Atari 
$39.95 


DesignWare. Inc. 

185 Berry St. 

San Francisco, CA 94107 

(415)546-1866 


Path Tactics 

Apple 
$29.95 


MECC 

3490 Lexington Ave. N. 
St. Paul. MN 55112 
(612)481-3500 


Pick the Numbers 

Apple. C64 

$45 (school price) 

$60 (list price) 


D.C. Heath & Co. 
125 Spring St. 
Lexington. MA 02173 
(617) 862-6650 


Quations 

Apple 
$39.95 


Scholastic. Inc. 
730 Broadway 
New York. NY 10003 
(212)505-3000 


Race Car' Rithnwt it- 
Ships Abov 

Apple. IBM PC.PCjr.Atari.C64 
$39.95 each 


Unicorn Software 
1775 E. Tropicanu 38 
Las Vegas. NV 89109 
(702) 798-2727 


Starship Alert 

Apple 
$34.95 


The Wizard 
18584 Carlwyn Dr. 
Castro Valley. CA 94546 

(415) 582-8252 


Success with Math 

Apple. C64. Atari 
$24.95 


CBS Software 
One Fawcett PI. 
Greenwich. CT 06836 
(203)622-2525 


Teasers by Tobbs 

Apple.Atari.TRS-80.TRS-80CC 
$55 disk 
$39 cassette 


Sunburst Communications 
39 Washington Ave. 
Pleasantville, NY 10570 
(914) 769-5030 


Tri-Math 

C64 
$19.95 


Human Engineered Software 
150 N.Hill Dr. 
Brisbane. CA 94005 
(415)468-4111 



October 1 984 c Creative Computing 



91 



PERSONAL 



Expert Systems 

Use your microcomputer to better understand yourself and others. 



Expert advice. The human edge. 
Understanding people. That doesn't 
sound like the stuff of microcomputers. 
Indeed, a recent survey found that many 
executives don't use computers because 
they feel their jobs deal with people and 
computers have nothing to offer them. 
These executives describe their jobs in 
terms of power, judgment, and inter- 
personal skills rather than numbers or 
things. 

Until recently, these executives were 
right on target. But within the past year 
things have changed dramatically — in 
both hardware and software. In hard- 



/ was advised to stop 

stalls with deadlines, 

avoid threats, give 

minimal answers, and 

use Mr. Melton's 

shortcomings to my 

advantage. 



ware, 1983 saw the advent of the note- 
book computer, a forgiving, easy to 
learn, easy to use, go-anywhere machine. 
And in software, we are beginning to see 
programs that go beyond accounting, 
spreadsheets, and word processors, pro- 
grams that begin to touch upon human 
interactions, negotiations, and the 
emotional side of management. 



The Negotiation Edge 

How would you like to enter your 
next negotiating situation armed with a 
seven-page document outlining a recom- 
mended strategy for success? I recently 
spent ten minutes before an important 
financial negotiating session with a new 

92 




SOFTWARE 
EVALUATION 



David H. Ahl 



computer program from Human Edge 
Software. I was rewarded with a 
document that told me: 

"Mr. Jack Mellon will greet you in a 
cordial, professional manner. Like you, 
he is confident about his skills and likely 
to be knowledgeable about the issues un- 
der negotiation. He holds strong opin- 
ions and is not easily persuaded. This 
could pose a problem as you, too, are 
steadfast in your ideas. In order to avoid 
this, you may have to be flexible and 
show some acceptance of his position. 

"You are both risk-takers and enjoy 
dealing with a tough competitor. This 
can be a very engaging, as well as profit- 
able negotiation for you if you can avoid 
angry confrontations. Stubbornness is a 
quality you both share which makes 
arguing pointless." 

Following this brief introduction were 
two pages on planning a negotiating ap- 
proach including sections on the antici- 
pated counterpart position, details of 
recommended tactics and strategies. In 
this section, I was told that Mr. Mellon 
may use unfair tactics and that it might 
be worthwhile for me to create an 
emotional distraction. 

Another single-spaced page recom- 
mended the approach to take during the 
actual process of negotiating. With Mr. 
Mellon, for example, I was advised to 
avoid deadlocks. "The two of you can be 
unyielding at times. If you reach an im- 
passe, the simple tactic of taking turns 
can be used to please all parties. . . " I 
was also advised to stop stalls with dead- 
lines, avoid threats, give minimal 
answers, and use Mr. Mellon's short- 
comings to my advantage. 



Finally, a one-page section discussed 
bringing the negotiations to a successful 
close. I was advised to push Mr. Mellon 
to settle quickly, use ultimatums as a last 
resort, make an offer Mr. Mellon 
couldn't refuse (always good advice), 
and tie up loose ends. Each of these 
pieces of advice was backed up by a 
paragraph describing the likely outlook 
of both parties and their reactions to 
various alternative strategies. 

Following this five-page negotiation 
strategy report was a 1 '/ 2 -page summary 
of the key points titled, Negotiation 
Game Plan. This was not just a repeat of 
the subheads in the strategy report but a 
summary of the key action points: "Find 
out if Mr. Mellon's time is really limited. 
Put pressure on Mr. Mellon to make the 
first offer. Discuss sensitive issues 
briefly. Meet resistance by explaining the 
consequences of a failure to agree." In 
all, there were IS action points in the 
game plan. 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: The Negotiation Edge 
Type: Analysis of human 

interactions 
Authors: Michael Rufflo, Kathy 

Johnson, Shlomo Malin 
System: IBM PC 
Format: Disk 
Summary: Helps give you the edge 

in various business and personal 

situations. 
Price: $295 
Manufacturer: 

Human Edge Software 

2445 Faber PI. 

Palo Alto, CA 94303 

(415)493-1593 



October 1 984 c Creative Computing 



The important work. When you're doing 
important work, the most important thing in 
your computer is also the least expensive: the 
diskette that "saves" your work. That's why 
smart businesses rely on Janus. 

Better by design. The most critical com- 
ponent of a diskette isn't the recording me- 
dium. It's the jacket. And once you've crimped 
or bent the jacket, you can say goodbye to 
the diskette inside — and all the important 
work you saved on it. It stands to reason ... the 
stronger the jacket is, the safer your work is. 

Janus set the standard. By simply 
increasing the thickness of the disk jacket by 
25%, Janus increased the strength by almost 
100%. . . setting a new standard. And, we 
set another standard with our absolute no- 
nonsense guarantee. 

Tested. 100%. Janus 8" and 5W disk- 
ettes aren't simply batch tested. They're indi- 
vidually tested. 100%. Which means they work. 
And keep working. 

The guarantee. If any Janus diskette 
ever fails to perform, for any reason, your 
Janus dealer will replace it. Free. No ques- 
tions asked. 

Color coded. Janus diskettes are color 
coded for your computer, which means you'll 
never forget which diskette fits what. If you're 
working in a double-sided, double-density 
format for instance, just ask for "Janus Blue." 
"Green" for single-sided, double-density. . . 
and so on. 

Time is money. The most important 
thing you save on a diskette is your time. Your 
work. If that work is important, your diskette 
is important. Which is why you buy Janus. 
When you hit "save," it gets saved. That's our 
guarantee. 

jnnus 

For your important work. 

Janus Dysc Company, 1860 Barber Lane, 
Milpitas, CA 95305 (800) 338-0100 




CIRCLE 153 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



lome Smart Ho 

Smarthome I™ — 

Home Control Made Easy 



A most appealing new concept for 
your Apple. Now the age of 
real home management is here with 
SMARTHOME I from CyberLYNX. Instead of 
your Apple™ sitting around all day, resting 
on its software, it could be keeping you — 
and your home — secure, warm, cozy, and 
entertained 24 hours a day. SMARTHOME 
can really make your Apple shine. This icon 
software and hardware package lets your 
personal computer install and monitor a 
fully wireless home security system with 
window and door sensors, infrared motion 
sensors, remote controller, and an alarm 
center. SMARTHOME also automatically 
controls lights and appliances so you can 
come home to a warm, safe, well-lit house 
with soft music playing and the 
smell of dinner cooking. And 
SMARTHOME can do all this 
without paring away any of your 
Apple's capabilities because it doesn't 
dedicate the computer. S>nce it's 
wireless, installation is a breeze and it's 
run by icon-graphic software like you've 
never seen before for the Apple II family. 
Best of all, it lets the computer do what 
you really bought it to do — simplify your 
life. 





Imagine your computer 

• waking your family in case of a fire and turning the 
lights on for a safe exit. 

• alerting the neighbors to a break-in when you're not 
home. 

• calling out for help in a medical emergency when you 
aren't able to. 

• turning on the TV in time for that favorite show with 
the popcorn already made. 

• switching on the hall lights when your children get up 
at night and turning them off when they forget. 

• lighting up the front steps when you pull in the 
driveway. 

For home security so sophisticated it's simple, and home 
control so simple it's fun — ask for SMARTHOME and 
install some peace of mind with your Apple today. 
The most exciting new product for intelligent home 
computers is arriving at your dealer's now — see what 
everyone is talking about — SMARTHOME from 
CyberLYNX. 
For the name of the SMARTHOME dealer nearest you call 

CyberLYNX Computer Products, Inc., 4828 Sterling Drive, 
Boulder, CO 80301 (303) 444-7733 

SMARTHOME I Is a registered trademark of CyberLYNX Computer Products. Inc. Apple is a registered trademark ol Apple Computer. Inc. 

CIRCLE 119 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




PERSONAL 



Using the program is simple. Pop the 
program disk and data disk into an IBM 
PC. A colorful menu appears. First step: 
answer a series of 108 questions about 
yourself. You need do this only once. 
Then, you are presented with a series of 
descriptive adjectives; One keystroke 
says either, "Yes, this describes my 
opponent" or "No, it doesn't." As I 
mentioned above, ten minutes saw me 
through both sections. Then I selected 
the printout section, the results of which 
were described above. 

Is the package worth $295? Well, 
while it won't get the same daily use as a 
word processor or spreadsheet, if you 
use it just once, the program will pay for 
itself. I was tempted to say "use it 
successfully," but frankly I can't imag- 
ine it not being successful. 

Related Family Members 

Instead of describing the other mem- 
bers of the Human Edge family in detail, 
I think a story tells it better. I recently 
met a young person (X) whose identity 
will remain secret. X confided that 
he/she used The Sales Edge program 
prior to asking for a promotion. "I 
wasn't really expecting it," said X, "and 
I was astonished when I walked away 
from the meeting with both a promotion 
and a raise. The package really works!" 
'Nuff said? 

The third package in the business 
series is The Management Edge, a pro- 
gram designed to help increase motiva- 
tion, solve conflicts, tackle behavior 
problems, boost productivity, improve 
supervisory techniques, and influence 
superiors. 



Mind Prober 

Combining their extensive experience 
in the motivations of business negotia- 
tions with the interpretation of psycho- 
logical tests, the principals of Human 
Edge Software have written a program 
for practically anyone who would like to 
create a psychological profile of himself 
or someone else. 

As input, it uses an expanded list of 
adjectives like that used in the second 
part of the Negotiation package. Gen- 
erally, after talking with someone (job 
candidate, peer, friend, or foe) for about 
one-half hour you will be able to answer 
most of the descriptive adjectives with a 
yea or nay. Not all will be absolutely 
accurate — they never are — but enough 
probably will be that the program will 
have adequate information with which 
to formulate a reasonably accurate pro- 
file of the other person. 

This profile is formulated by placing 
the variables in a matrix, one dimension 
of which is the five basic factors. These 

October 1 984 * Creative Computing 



SOFTWARE 
PROFILE 



Name: Mind Prober 
Type: Analyzes people 
Authors: Kathy Johnson and Jim 

Johnson 
System: Apple, IBM PC, C-64 
Format: Disk 
Summary: Provides a psychological 

profile of yourself and others. 
Price: $49.95 
Manufacturer: 

Human Edge Software 

2445 Faber PI. 

Palo Alto, CA 94303 

(415)493-1593 



include supremacy (leadership, extrovert 
vs. introvert, and the like); kindness/ 
aggressiveness; emotional stability (do 
you worry a great deal or are you sta- 
ble?); conscientiousness/impulsiveness; 
and a fifth variable which includes cul- 
ture and intellect — sort of how smart 
you are and how you apply your skills 
(would you rather build models or heal 
people?). 

The evaluation matrix has rules and 
heuristics similar to those that have been 
in use for years in psychological testing. 
Once applied, you get a two-page 
analysis — video or printed — of the sub- 
ject. Paragraphs describe his career and 
job involvement, likes and dislikes in 
other people, personal values, and even 
his likely attitude toward sex. 

For example, about an associate we 
learned that "Peter often dives into new 
projects before finishing old ones. He 
has many irons in the fire, wants to suc- 
ceed and enjoys being on the fast track. 
"Peter has a strong need to seek out 
excitement in his life, but has difficulty 
telling others what he needs or wants. 

"Peter is a non-conformist — prefer- 
ring to rebel against authority and social 
convention . . . Peter loves to do what is 
shocking and forbidden, and likes to 
show off his sexual prowess." 

The Mind Prober package includes a 
book with seven chapters which describe 
the basis of expert-based psychological 
systems, how you can "read" and 
analyze people and why you should (or 
shouldn't). 

There is more, but this should give 
you an idea of what you can expect from 
Mind Prober. VisiCalc may be the reason 
you bought your computer, but Mind 
Prober certainly puts the little beast in a 
new light, doesn't it? ■ 

CIRCLE 434 ON REAOER SERVICE CARD 

95 



y#i 



c\ 



s? 



MACINTOSH 






Retell 


Your 




Price 


Price 


BIim Chip 






Millionaire 


60 00 


48.00 


Hid* Systems 






Habadex 


195.00 


155.00 


Infocom: 






Zork 1 


39.95 


31.95 


Zork II 


39 95 


31.95 


Zork III 


39 95 


3195 


Living Video Taxi 






Think Tank 


145 00 


116.00 


Main Street: 






Mainstreet Filer 


250 00 


200 00. 


Memorex 






3v, ■ Diskette/box 


60 00 


48.00 


Microsoft 






Multiplan 


195 00 


155 00 


Basic 


150.00 


120 00 


Chart 


150 00 


120.00 


Penguin 






Transylvania 


39 95 


31.95 


Prometheus 






Promodem with Mac Pack 


495 00 


395 00 



APPLE 



Retail Your 
Price Price 



79 95 
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36 95 
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17995 13500 



4995 
1995 



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Advanced Logic 

Word Handler 

Handlers 

Spell Handler 

List Handler 

Arklronics 

Jane 

Brodarbund 

Print Shop 

Print Shop Reims 

Beagle Brothers 

QPLE 

Fat Cat 

Electronic Arts 

Music Const Set 

One-on-One 

Financial Cook Book 

Hayes 

Mach III He'll + 

Krell 

Krell Logo 

MlcroSci 

A2 Disk Drive 

Software Publishing 

PFS Write 

PFS Report 

PFS File 

Strategic Simulation 

War in Russia 

Objective Kursk 

TO Products 

Selectaport 
TG Joystick 
Viilcorp 
Flash Calc 



In Bay Area Visit 

SOFTWARE SOLUTIONS 

11185 San Pablo Ave. 
El Cerrito. CA 94530 
Hours: 10 AiVI-6 PM 



39 95 
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CO Q_ 

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U^ CNJ C£> 

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<Sj 00< 

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co £ x 



D. LU fj 



CIRCLE 166 ON REAOER SERVICE CARD 



EDUCATION 



Computers Make 




i ' $. 



More Effective 
and Fun 




Glenn M. Kleiman and Mary M. Humphrey 



We have often encountered teachers, 
parents, and administrators who believe 
that special education students should 
not use computers. They present neg- 
ative arguments like the following: 

Negative Argument #1: Special edu- 
cation students won't be able to use 
computers. They are too complex and 
students will only become frustrated try- 
ing to make them work. They can't do 
math or read; how are they going to op- 
erate a computer? 

Negative Argument #2: They will 
break the computer right away. Just 
look at the mess they make of their 
books and papers. 

Negative Argument #3: Their social 
skills are poor enough now. If you put 
them on machines they will become even 
worse at communicating with other stu- 
dents and teachers. 

Negative Argument #4: There is too 
much for the special education teachers 
to do already. When will they find time 
to learn to use the computers them- 
selves, teach the kids, and then make 
sure the computers are used properly 
and not damaged? 

In this article, we describe the experi- 
ences of teachers and students in two 

96 



special education classes into which 
computers were successfully introduced. 
Their experiences convinced us that 
computers can be especially valuable for 
students with learning problems. 

Background 

We introduced computers into these 
classrooms as part of a project that 
involved developing and testing software 
designed for spelling drill-and-practice. 
Twenty-nine children, from 7 to 13 years 
of age, participated in the project. All 
the children had learning problems 
which required special remedial instruc- 
tion. Eighteen of the children came to a 
resource room from their regular class- 
rooms for one hour each day. The other 
eleven children had more severe learning 
problems and spent the entire school day 
in a special education classroom. Each 
child used the computer individually 
three or four times a week, for 1 5 to 20 
minutes each time. The project lasted 
ten weeks. 

All the students had histories of seri- 
ous problems with their school work. 
Their books and papers were quite 
messy, and their interactions with other 
students and teachers were poor. These 



children required a great deal of individ- 
ual attention from teachers, whose time 
and patience were often strained. 

The four negative arguments we have 
described claim that computers would 
increase these problems. However, we 
found that computers helped alleviate 
them. 

The spelling program successfully 
increased the rate at which the children 
learned their words. More importantly, 



Computers can be 

especially valuable for 

students with learning 

problems. 



we found that the use of computers led 
to improvements in the children's self- 
esteem, their interactions with others, 
and their feelings about school and 
learning. These benefits are of far more 
general significance than the learning of 
spelling words, and so we will focus 
upon them in this article. 

Computers Are Easy to Use 

Many educators believe that comput- 
ers are too complex for students with 
October 1984 • Creative Computing 



■^■^^^^^M 



What made over 100,000 

Apple II owners fall in love 

with System Saver? 



It's the most versatile, most convenient, most 
useful peripheral ever made for the Apple.' 

System Saver' filters out damaging AC line 
noise and power surges. 

70-90% of all microcomputer malfunctions can be 
traced to power line problems* Problems your 
System Saver guards against 

Power line noise can often be interpreted as data. 
This confuses your computer and produces system 
errors Power surges and spikes can cause severe 
damage to your Apple's delicate circuitry and lead 
to costly servicing. 

System Saver clips surges and 
spikes at a 130 Volts RMS/ 175 
Volts dc level A PI type filter 
attenuates common and 
transverse mode noise by a 
minimum of 30 dB from 600 
kHz to 20 mHz with a max- 
imum attenuation of 50 dB. 
You end up with an Apple 
that's more accurate, more 
efficient and more reliable 



System Saver lets your Apple keep its cool. 

Today's advanced peripheral cards generate heat In 
addition, the cards block any natural air flow through 
the Apple He creating high temperature conditions 
that shorten the life of the Apple and peripheral cards 

System Saver's efficient, quiet 
fan draws fresh air across 
the mother board, over 
the power supply and 
out the side ventilation 

slots It leaves your Apple cool, calm and running 

at top speed 





SYSTEM SAVER APPLE II 

iy\l(7v 



System Saver makes your Apple more 
convenient to use. 

No more reaching around to the back of your Apple 
to turn it on. No more fumbling for outlets and cords 
to plug in your monitor and printer. System Saver 
organizes all your power needs. 





It functions as a multi-outlet power strip with two 
switched outlets Plus System Saver offers the 
ultimate convenience, a front mounted power switch 
for fingertip control of your entire system. 



So if you want to keep 
damaging heat, line noise and power surges out of 
your system for good, pick up the only peripheral 
that's in use every second your computer is in use. 
The System Saver. You'll soon come to think of it as 
the piece Apple forgot. 



Compatible with 
Apple stand 




I 

Please send. 



-SYSTEM SAVER(S). $89 95 each Tbtal ! 



Include $2 50 tot shipping and handling 

New York State residents add applicable sales tax 

D Check enclosed □ Visa D Master Card 



c;.ird No 



Expires 



Name on Card 



Nam* 



Address (UPS delivery) 



City State 

251 Park Avenue South 

New York. NY 10010 

(212) 475-5200 Tlx 467383 KML NY 



Zip 



Phone 



P^ KENSINGTON 
1 1^ MICROWARE 



'PC Magazine March 1983 

System Saver is UL Listed : surge suppression circuitry conforms System Saver is a registered trademark of Kensington Microware Ltd 

to IEEE specification 507 1980 Category A Available in 220/240 Volts. 50/60 Hz C 1984 Kensington Microware Ltd System Saver is patent ponding 

CIRCLE 131 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



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funcrjon Strip (11*1 

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BASIC (150 

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FunPat REW I 39 



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ALS/SaScon Vaaay. Wad Handier ( 60 ( 39 

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COCHkr ***. Mulapian. Apple attach ( 60 ( 40 

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Market Manajer S 300 ( 195 

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dUMty (tor dBase II) S 99 ( 65 

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U^lrflwPerirrt./tAarlMpp (150 ( 99 
Macro Pro. |al rrqurre ,80Ct>/M Card) 

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Practcal Basic Proirams(40ea| ( 100 $ 49 

Paacratm Requrrts CP/M ( librae. 64K 

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ParAarAI>rtertr*rrp/Spet2pa>lCP/M| J 399 (199 

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SattnY*rter II (130 ( M 

The Dictionary REV S 100 $ 6* 

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a Handler Pat IWord, Lrst i Sped) (130 $ 65 

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PubRatstrtl. PES Ft* (175 $ 7* 

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CIRCLE 116 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



EDUCATION 



learning problems, and therefore will 
lead to frustration. This fear may be 
based on misconceptions about the diffi- 
culties of using computers or it may 
stem from experiences with poorly de- 
signed software. 

Most children, even those with learn- 
ing difficulties, quickly become comfort- 
able with computers. Some children in 
our project took only one practice ses- 
sion to learn to operate the computer. 
These students were then able to serve as 
tutors for the others. 

All the children mastered the proce- 
dures for using the computer in a few 
sessions. They were not at all intimi- 
dated by the computer and were quite 
willing to experiment, pressing different 
keys to see what could happen. The chil- 
dren seldom encountered problems in 
operating the computer. When a prob- 
lem did occur, they re-entered answers, 
pressed return, repeated load or run 
commands, and so on — they did not be- 
come frustrated or give up. 

An important factor in the success of 
our project was that the software was 
easy for children to use. The difficulty of 
the drills could be adjusted to an appro- 
priate level for each child. The computer 
prompted the children at each step and 
the procedures were simple and consis- 
tent. The program waited for the chil- 
dren to signal that they were ready, and 
it provided feedback that they could 
understand easily. 

Computers Don't Wear Out 

Educators and parents also express 
concern that since special education stu- 
dents often produce messy work, wear 
out their books, and break crayons and 
pencils, they are likely to damage 
computers. A closer look at the type of 
wear and tear in these classrooms did 
not show evidence of any deliberate 
abuse, but rather the results of problems 
common among special education stu- 
dents. Many of these children have diffi- 
culty with the fine motor coordination 
required to fold papers, draw within 
lines, write legibly, and erase mistakes 
neatly. Consequently, one of the best 
liked features of the computer was that 
it did not require any of these skills and 
did not break, tear, or wrinkle. 

Even when children had to "hunt and 
peck" to enter answers, they found it 
much easier to type than to write with a 
pen or pencil. For these children, press- 
ing a key to delete an answer meant that 
they were able to erase a mistake "with- 
out making a hole in the screen." 

Computers Encourage Social 
Interaction 

Another negative argument is based 
on the view that special education stu- 
dents are withdrawn or socially isolated 

100 



children who need to be encouraged to 
initiate interactions. Our experience 
leads us to believe that this is not the 
case. Most of the children we worked 
with demanded a great deal of attention, 
particularly from the teachers. The 
amount of time they spent seeking direc- 
tions and approval from the teacher had 
been both annoying for the teacher and 
disrupting for the class as a whole. 
While working on the computer, the 



The computer project 

had dramatic effects 

upon the children's 

self-esteem and upon 

how they were 

regarded by the other 

children, teachers, and 

their parents. 



children were kept busy entering an- 
swers, changing mistakes, or moving on 
to the next part of the lesson. They 
received frequent and immediate feed- 
back about their answers and continued 
working on each word until they spelled 
it correctly. They participated more 
actively in learning than they did in 
most of their other lessons. 

Using the computer allowed the stu- 
dents to be more independent with their 
work. The teachers felt that this reduced 
the competition between students for 
their attention and improved the overall 
quality of teacher-student interactions. 

An important feature of the lesson 
program was that it responded immedi- 
ately to incorrect answers. Feelings of 
failure were lessened since the children 
did not accumulate a collection of errors 
before receiving feedback (as usually 
happens when working paper and pencil 
lessons that the teacher later checks). 

The program also required the stu- 
dents to type each word correctly before 
going on to the next one. Rather than 
cause frustration, this practice helped 
the children avoid making the same mis- 
take repeatedly — a frequent problem for 
these students. The teachers felt that 
their students were better able to tolerate 
failures and showed more patience when 
working their lessons on the computer. 
Many times when they had trouble with 
one of their other lessons, the children 
asked to be allowed to "work it on the 
computer." 

The computer project had dramatic 
effects upon the children's self-esteem 
and upon how they were regarded by the 
other children, teachers, and their par- 



ents. The children came to see them- 
selves as more capable because they were 
able to operate a "real adult computer." 
They became more confident and willing 
to take on challenges, and were less eas- 
ily frustrated. The teachers began to ex- 
pect the children to be capable of 
mastering more difficult lessons. 

For the first time, other children in 
the school (who did not have computers 
in their classes) were envious of the spe- 
cial education children. The children's 
parents were interested in the project 
and expressed pride in their children's 
ability to use the computer. The number 
of parents who came to the school on 
parent-teacher meeting nights increased 
dramatically. 

Computers Help Teachers 

Many teachers are concerned that in- 
troducing a computer to their classroom 
would be a drain upon their time and re- 
sources. The time devoted to learning 
how to use the computer and im- 
plementing it in the classroom is less 
than many teachers expect. The rewards 
can be well worth the time and effort. 

In the classrooms participating in our 
project, the teachers quickly learned to 
use the computer. The use of peer-tutors 
to help other children was efficient for 
the teachers and contributed to positive 
interactions among the children. It also 
led to students helping each other with 
computer problems that occurred later. 

After a schedule was developed, the 
children took their computer turns with- 
out teacher supervision. The teachers 
found the computer could replace them 
as monitors and drill-practice tech- 
nicians, and thereby allowed them to de- 
vote more time and effort to teaching. 

Summary 

After the ten weeks with computers in 
their classrooms, the teachers sum- 
marized their views as follows: 

"In addition to the fun, the children 
enjoyed improved communication skills. 
an increased ability to handle frustration, 
an opportunity to progress in academic 
areas, and a growing independence 
within their learning environments. The 
success that the children experienced at 
the computer enhanced their self-esteem. 
Communications between parent and 
child, teacher and child, and teacher and 
teacher improved. All of these aspects 
helped establish a happy, friendly, and 
positive climate within the classroom." 

We have not discussed the details of 
the software and other aspects of our 
project, since we believe comparable 
effects could be obtained with many 
different applications of computers 
in special education. However, using 
computers does not automatically lead 
to such benefits. 

October 1 984 • Creative Computing 



EDUCATION 



We regard three general factors as 
critical to the successful introduction of 
computers into any classroom, and we 
believe that these factors are even more 
important for special education classes. 
First, the computer learning experiences 
must be integrated into the overall pro- 
gram of instruction. That is, the com- 
puter must be treated as a tool for 
learning, not as a toy for playing games. 
Second, the teachers and children must 



The computer must be 

treated as a tool for 

learning, not as a toy 

for playing games. 



be given sufficient training in how to op- 
erate the computer to become comfort- 
able with it. Third, the software must be 
well designed and easy to use. 

Positive Arguments 

After using computers with special 
education students, we are convinced 
that the arguments against doing so are 
invalid. With good software and proper 
implementation, computers can have 
very positive effects. We propose the 
following five arguments in favor of us- 
ing computers in special education: 

Positive Argument #1: Computers 
can individualize instruction. They can 
be programmed to present lessons or 
drills at a level of difficulty and speed 
appropriate for each child. They can 
provide immediate and informative feed- 
back, which is particularly helpful for 
children with learning problems. 

Positive Argument #2: Computers 
can help special education children be- 
come active learners. As they learn to 
control and interact with the computer, 
their work habits and study skills 
improve. 

Positive Argument #3: Improved 
learning skills lead to remarkable 
changes in children's self-esteem. They 
have a chance to see learning as fun and 
easy, and to see themselves as capable 
and in control. Their expectations for 
success in other school activities also 
improve. 

Positive Argument #4: As the special 
education students become more capable 
and confident, other children, teachers, 
and parents begin to change their atti- 
tudes about these students' abilities. 

Positive Argument #5: Special edu- 
cation teachers find their jobs more 
rewarding as they spend less time keep- 
ing records, coaxing and monitoring stu- 
dents, and more time actually teaching. 

■ 
October 1984 » Creative Computing 



400 programs with 
Whole Earth connections! 

After reviewing thousands of software packages, Stewart Brand 
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CIRCLE 156 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



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CIRCLE 185 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



EDUCATION 



IsThereaWufflegump 
in Your House? 

Creative Computing talks educational software 
with four top developers. 



The amount of educational software 
on the shelves has multiplied so rapidly in 
the past few years that winnowing the 
good educational software from the moun- 
tain of chaff can be a harrowing task. For 
guidelines in choosing educational software. 
Creative Computing asked four leading 
educational software developers what 
they think educational software should 
do and what the future holds. 



Sherrie Van Tyle 



Joyce Hakansson 

"Learning is the most enjoyable thing I 
can imagine for children." says Joyce 
Hakansson. who started her own edu- 
cational software development firm two 
years ago in a renovated Victorian house 
in Berkeley. CA. Since then, the Joyce 
Hakansson Associates (JHA) team of pro- 
grammers, educators, musicians, artists, 
writers, and children has produced 19 
educational games distributed by four pub- 
lishers. 

Hakansson designed the Computer 
Gallery at Sesame Place, a theme park in 
Pennsylvania, from 1979-81 at the request 
of the Children's Television Workshop. 
the originators of "Sesame Street." She 
began her career in educational software 
in 1973 when she looked for a more in- 
tuitive way to convey math principles to 
her own young children. She and a parent 
volunteer started a computer lab in con- 
junction with the Lawrence Hall of Science 
at the University of California at Berkeley. 
The next year, she directed their Computer 
Education Project, which has taught 30.000 
to 40.000 people each year to use 
computers. 

She believes that educational software 
should be entertaining, an enhancement 
of the learning process. "Children need 
positive educational experiences to feel 
confident with a self-learning tool like a 
computer. So we put a lot of play, 
laughter— the theater— into our software. 
Software should be one more tool in 
children's lives. But we try not to take it 
totally seriously." 

She acknowledges that "the computer 
has become an artifact of our culture. 
But computers do not make kids smarter. 
Computers can enhance children's self 
images, their feelings about themselves. 

102 



But we shouldn't be slavishly tied to the 
technology." 

Space shoot-'em-ups reward aggressive 
behavior, she says: the player who shoots 
down the most planes, who is the most 
aggressive, is the most heavily rewarded. 
JHA programs, on the other hand, aim to 
create an environment of learning and 
play, in which the child is in control rather 



Computers 
do not make 
kids smarter. 



than in the path of an errant missile. 

For example, in Alf in the Color Cave, 
the child controls the joystick and fire 
button to animate shapes and to make 
sounds. She calls it a "video busy box." 
The child manuevers Alf through tunnels, 
and. if successful, moves through all three 
screens to the end. where a magic color 
change occurs. But the game is pro- 
grammed so that each screen is fun to do 
in itself. Alf meets an obstacle, a Wuffle- 
gump. while on his journey, but she em- 




Joyce Hakansson 



phasizes "there is no sense of harm, damage, 
or destruction. He is never scared or 
running away." 

Children need different skills today to 
prepare them for the world, she points 
out. The mountain of information means 
that rote learning is less important than in 
the past; knowing how to find and use 
facts, however, has become vital. "Cre- 
ativity, confidence, acceptance, and adapt- 
ability to change, to new contexts are 
even more important these days." 

Instead of writing programs with exer- 
cises that have only one correct answer, 
"JHA creates learning environments. There 
is no one right way to do it. Children are 
encouraged to try things, to find that there 
are many ways to solve a problem. Rather 
than trying to find concrete answers, the 
problems usually are open-ended." 

She notes that the computer is good at 
performing repetitive tasks such as com- 
putation. Of course, the child still needs 
to leam the relations between the numbers 
to evaluate the results. 

Some traditional educational tasks are 
accomplished better without the computer, 
she points out. For example, in math, 
learning volume and weights is easier in 
three dimensions than on the computer. 
Free drawing is better with crayons and 
paper; and as yet the fine lines of book 
illustrations haven't been duplicated by 
computer graphics. Workbooks and flash- 
cards remain valuable. 

As for the future of educational software, 
"we're going into a time that is very un- 
settled...! have no crystal ball." For high 
school students and adults, however, she 
foresees increasing access to large libraries 
of information by computer. 

JHA's goal is "low threshold" software. 
"The software is the child's window to 
the machine; it should be as natural, as 
intuitive, as barrier-free as possible." 

She gives an example: "When you look 
at a shovel, you know what to do with 
it — it looks like something you dig with. 
It is part of our culture. As software pro- 
ducers, we need to use some of the 
metaphors of our culture as touchstones. 
Even if the terminology is not exact by 
engineering standards, software should be 
natural, friendly, and familiar." Thus, in 
one JHA program, the instruction "delete" 

October 1984 * Creative Computing 



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EDUCATION 



was eliminated in favor of "erase," because 
"delete is not a people word." She elab- 
orates: "We try to validate the individual 
intuition." 

JHA tries to look at the world through 
a child*s eyes. In Duck s Ahoy, for example, 
the player moves gondolas in the canals 
of Venice to gather ducks. Limited to a 
16K cartridge. JHA could show the ducks 
submerged but could not show them 
swimming safely to shore. To allay any 
anxieties in young players, the documen- 
tation explains that the ducks went swim- 
ming, reached the beach safely, and sunned 
themselves. "Whenever possible, we con- 
cern ourselves with the child's perception 
of the world." 



Tom Snyder 




In preschool software, the adult's 
feelings about the software may be more 
important than the child's, according to 
Tom Snyder, head of his own educational 
software development company in Cam- 
bridge, MA. "If the software isn't intriguing 
to parents, the parents don't want to be 
there. We are overrating the value of 
young kids interacting with the software 
by themselves. A young kid alone with 
software is almost not worth talking about. 
"1 recommend that parents buy soft- 
ware that intrigues them. Then the parent 
and child can work together. Then the 
child can choose some software and get 
the parent involved." 

For the preschool child, "nine-tenths of 
the reason the kid is at the computer is to 
get lap-time, access to the parents. There 
are so many teachable moments that 
arise— when parents can intervene with 
an example or an explanation." Accord- 
ingly, Tom Snyder Productions (TSP) 
schedules Parent's Nights for young chil- 
dren to bring in their parents to playtest 
the software. 

Snyder became acquainted with com- 
puters almost 20 years ago when at the 
age of 15 he sent one of his designs to 
IBM. They responded by delivering hard- 
ware parts to his home and encouraging 
him to experiment. Instead, in the late 
60's, he became a keyboard musician with 
a rock 'n roll band under contract to 
Capitol Records. He majored in French 
at Swarthmore College and obtained his 
master's degree in education from Lesley 
College in Cambridge. MA. He teaches 
science and music at Shady Hill School in 
Cambridge. In 1980, he founded the Com- 
puter Learning Connection, but changed 
the name to Tom Snyder Productions 
(TSP) in 1983 to distinguish the company 
name from others in the field. 

He comments: "Of all the areas, the 
greatest potential for 'bogusness' exists in 
the educational market. It is an open 
invitation for those with no interest or 
training in education to do brightly colored. 

104 



Tom Snyder 



interactive programs and after the fact, 
deem them educational." 

Snyder aims for the collaborative ap- 
proach in the classroom. In the Snooper 
Troops series of mysteries, students can 
work singly, in pairs, or on teams. The 
teamwork fosters cooperation in reaching 
a goal. 



A computer is a great 

laboratory tool, but 

it should be clear that 

it is a tool; the computer 

is a mild servant. 



TSP has also designed simulations for 
the classroom. In one module Snyder 
simulates navigation: Groups of kids search 
for whales and along the way learn to use 
radar, sonar, and a telescope, and to map 
in detail. Not only must students cooperate 
to reach the goal, but they learn the basics 
of note taking and organizing data. Working 
with pencil and paper are part of the 
learning, too. 

Snyder believes that "the computer is 
at its peak value in the classroom when 
the kid isn't at it. It creates openings in 
experience; it invites him to look up the 
Amtrak schedule, to go to another kid 
and ask how far it is from Detroit to 
Denver." In terms of teamwork, "you may 
not learn something unless you repeat it 
to someone else." 

Cooperation would enrich video games. 
Snyder believes. In the traditional arcade 
game, "the arcade game player is in a 
glass sphere. If another person speaks to 
you, it damages your game. If your eyes 
leave the screen you die. But if you had a 
pause button to freeze the action, you 
could stop, talk about strategy, and get 
suggestions. Cooperation puts holes in the 



sphere." 

Unfortunately children are usually asked 
to learn for abstract reasons ("because 
it's good for you"), Snyder points out. 
Classroom simulations in which students 
run a factory or an oil company provide a 
context of learning for children. Solving a 
concrete problem serves to motivate the 
child. One of the students described how 
much he had learned by playing the factory 
simulation: "We got to make decisions 
that really mattered." 

Snyder acknowledges that teachers have 
used games to motivate kids for a long 
time: the computer provides what Snyder 
terms "rich, dense opportunities." TSP 
has a sailing simulation to help teach navi- 
gation, in which the stars rise and the 
earth spins during the program. "When 
I'm asked why we sweeten it up with 
sugar, I say that I have to consider the 
market. Why would anyone buy something 
that is boring?" he says. 

Computers in the classroom should still 
be considered an experiment he says. 
"Everyone who can should participate in 
the experiment. But not to the extent that 
a great deal of money is spent on computers 
to replace the curriculum." 

Society's expectations for educational 
software are misguided, he thinks. The 
boom in the microcomputer market coin- 
cided with criticism of the teaching quality 
in schools. It gave the public the idea that 
computers can take care of bad education. 
He says "that's unfair. A computer is a 
great laboratory tool, but it should be 
clear that it is a tool: the computer is a 
mild servant. It can't solve the problem of 
bad teachers. And we're not in the Tof- 
fleresque era of home education. All we 
have invented is a good alternative to" 
TV. That's a far cry from education." 

Snyder foresees more use of Logo. "It 
helps kids to think procedurally. I also 
see more and better classroom simulations. 
The simulations currently available are 
not advanced: the sailing simulation was 
done four years ago. I don't know why 
more hasn't been developed for groups of 
kids working together. I look for advances 
in how to structure group dynamics." 

Jan Davidson 

"If it can be done as well in a book, we 
don't want to do it. It must be unique." 
says Jan Davidson, founder of Davidson 
& Associates of Rancho Palos Verdes. 
CA, developers of the popular educational 
packages Word Attack! I. Math Blaster!. 
Speed Reader II. Classmate, and Spell It. 

Davidson, who holds master's and doc- 
toral degrees in language arts from the 
University of Maryland, also founded Up- 
ward Bound, a nonprofit educational 
association that offers supplemental math 
and reading courses as well as SAT pre- 
paration. Before that, she was a high school 

October 1984 ■ Creative Computing 



EDUCATION 




Jan Davidson 



and college teacher. 

She became interested in computers as 
a motivational tool. "I have been a teach- 
er for many years and am always looking 
for a way to motivate students. That's 
how I got involved with computers. Often, 
the software will get them started, and 
they will go on to use books. This is true 



Testing is essential 
to quality. Educational 
software needs lots 
of testing. 



for both high school students and young 
children." 

Despite her belief in the computer as a 
motivational tool, she emphasizes, "if a 
$5 or $10 book offers the same information 
as software running on a $1000 computer, 
it doesn't make sense to invest in the 
software." 

For this reason, Davidson & Associates 
haven't developed complete SAT pre- 
paration programs yet. "The students take 
the test on paper. They are allowed to 
mark the booklet, to circle and to underline 
points. I try to create an environment 
similar to the one they will be in while 
taking the test." 

She thinks "educational software needs 
to be more quality-oriented, to attack a 
particular skill or area." One general char- 
acteristic to aim for is multiple activities- 
more than just one game, each building 
on the previous one in a logical sequence. 
In addition, she points out that "data disks 
extend the life of the programs. The ad- 
ditional words in Word Attack! and the 
stories in Speed Reader II also provide 
users with a cost effective way of expanding 
their existing software without having to 
purchase new programs." 

October 1 984 e Creative Computing 



A third criterion is an editor feature, in 
which the user can add his own spelling 
words or math problems. 

Further, "testing is essential to quality. 
Educational software needs lots of testing 
If more programs were tested, we would 
see higher quality software. It needs to be 
tested for educational soundness; are the 
materials presented in a way that will 
motivate the student? It also needs to be 
tested for bugs. We try to do all the things 
to it that a student would to make it 
crash. 

"Our emphasis is on the home end of 
the software market. I see a trend toward 
more quality and completeness. That ex- 
tends the life of the products." 

Sterling Swift 

Sterling Swift, of the Sterling Swift Pub- 
lishing Company, agrees that quality is 
essential in educational software. "The 
real issue in my judgment is the quality of 
product that is developed. I would rather 
do fewer products and better products. 
Frankly, that has been a problem in the 
education market. Quality builds in a 
confidence level for the consumer. In the 
past few years in the software market. 
some people have been a little greedy." 

The Austin, TX based company pub- 
lishes 64 titles of software and books for 
the classroom market. Swift, who has a 
degree in marketing from the University 
of Texas, is a veteran of college textbook 
publishing; he worked for the Prentice- 
Hall College Division for 14 years, in the 
college division of Harper & Row for five 
years, and managed the second largest 
college bookstore in the country at the 
University of Texas in Austin. Because 
the bookstore sold everything from trade 
books to women's clothing, his retail ex- 
perience made him aware of the computer 
retailer's problems. 

In developing software, he also keeps 
the average teacher in the classroom in 
mind, "I have been in the classroom on 
Monday at 9:00 a.m. and seen those blank 
stares." 

The future of educational software is 
promising. He says "the computer in K-12 
is proving to be a valuable tool. Schools 
have made major financial commitments, 
and we have pretty conclusive proof that 
it is assisting in the educational process. 
But we need to become more sophisticated 
about videodiscs, for example. 

"The sky is the limit for software develop- 
ment. We want to be on the cutting edge 
and not get bloody. The idea is to produce 
the software and bring the market with 
you. The software is becoming better. 
Some people are good enough to con- 
ceptualize it. The Macintosh in 1984 is 
where the Apple II was in 1977. People 
must rethink ways to use the computer— to 
take advantage of what the Mac has to 




Sterling Swift 



offer— and not just hook up software to a 
mouse. That is just dumb." he says. 

Swift develops software by helping 
authors perfect the product, packaging 
it. and selling it both in the United States 
and internationally. As enthusiastic as he 
is about the future of computer software. 
Swift says "programs that are mostly text. 



The sky is the limit 

for software 

development We want 

to be on the cutting 

edge and not 

get bloody. 



whether they are 40- or 80-columns, are 
just page-scrolling -nothing but a waste." 

Further, "we've not even scratched the 
surface of what can be done graphically. 
Young people today expect the graphics 
of MTV - substantial use of the visual 
arts. 

"The computer can be a tremendous 
reinforcing tool, if the program truly deals 
with problem-solving, as in a simulation, 
or in a real tutorial." 

He gives the example of Math Worlds, 
a middle school math program that deals 
with manipulation, algebraic functions, 
and geometry. Students work with mani- 
pulation by using a bag of blocks. And 
"you can use the computer to give you 
quick access, as a number cruncher. It 
extends the analysis of a problem. The 
whole purpose is to present the analysis 
and reason behind the math manipulation." 

Swift's new program. Graphic Grade- 
book, written by Tom Irby, takes Visi- 
Calc cells and adds graphics to produce 
pie and bar charts from the grade in- 
formation. ■ 

105 



NEWPRODUCTS 



What's New In 

Hardware 



Desktop Computer 
from ITT 



ITT has introduced the ITT Xtra Per- 
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Apple Compatible 
Portable 



Comp-U-Save has unveiled the Alex 
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CIRCLE 436 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



IBM PC Compatible 
from Canon 



The Canon Personal Computer, an 
IBM PC compatible, features a 16-bit 
8086 microprocessor, 256K. RAM, two 
half-height floppy disk drives, a serial 




L 



port, a parallel port, and five expansion 
slots. It supports either a monochrome 
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Canon includes MS-DOS and GW 
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CIRCLE 437 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



106 



October 1984 * Creative Computing 




A New Age Dawns for 
Microcomputer Programming 



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Finally there's an answer to the 
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Execution Time (sees.) 



Object Code Size (bytes) 



Program Load Time (sees.) 



Compile Time (sees. ) 



128 



3.2 



8.5 



255 



3.8 



329 



63 



181 



11.2 



3.9 



415 



23.5 



108 



As the benchmark results in the 
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And, not only is it fast in compile 
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PROMAL is easy. 
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PROMAL is available for the 
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PROMAL FEATURES 

COMPILED LANGUAGE 

Structured procedural language 
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Fast, 1-passcompler 

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Long variable names 

Gobal, Local, & Arg variables 

Byte, VK/brd, Integer types 

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Procedures w/ passed arguments 

Built in I/O library 

Arrays, strings, pointers 

Control Statements IF-ELSE, IF, WHILE 
FOR, CHOOSE, BREAK, REPEAT 
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Compiler I/O from/to disk or memory 

EXECUTIVE 

Command onented, w/line edit 

Memory resident 

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Function key definitions 
Program abort and pause 
22 Resident system commands, 

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Pnor command recall 
I/O Re-direction to disk or printer 

(UNIX-like) 

EDITOR 

Full-screen, cursor driven 

Function key controlled 

Line insert, delete, search 

String search and replace 

Block copy, move, delete & wnte to/ 

read from file 
Auto indent, undent support 



43 Machine-language commands 
Memory resident 
Call by name with arguments 
I/O, Edit, Stnng, Cursor control 
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PROMAL runs on 
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Raleigh, North Carolina 27609 



NEW PRODUCTS |- 



Fujitsu 16sx 



The Fujitsu 16sx features a 16-bit 
8086 microprocessor operating at 8 
MHz, 348K RAM expandable to 1Mb, 
one 360K floppy disk drive, and a 10Mb 
or 20Mb internal hard disk drive. It runs 
the MS-DOS, CP/M-86, and Concur- 
rent CP/M operating systems. 

The 16sx includes five expansion slots, 
one serial port, and one parallel port, 
and has interfaces for a light pen, mono- 
chrome monitor, and color monitor. 

The base price of the Fujitsu 16sx 
with 10Mb hard disk is S42S0. 

Fujitsu Microelectronics Inc., Pro- 




fessional Microsystems Div., 3320 Scott 
Blvd. Santa Clara. CA 95051. (408) 
980-0755. 

CIRCLE 438 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Wrist Terminal 
from Seiko 



From the pages of a Dick Tracy comic 
book is Seiko's Wrist Terminal RC-1000 
with accompanying wrist information 
system. 

Worn like a watch, the RC-1000 con- 
tains a LCD screen, has a memory 
capacity of 2K, holds 80 "pages" of 24 
characters, and connects to a RS-232C 
port. It stores phone numbers, flight 
schedules, memos, or any other informa- 
tion. It is also a watch that keeps time 
and dates and has an alarm. The lithium 
battery lasts for 1.5 years. 

The RC-1000 connects to a 5.5" x 
2.25" x 5/16" pocket keyboard with 61 
keys. The keyboard enters information 
into the RC-1000. A lithium battery in 
the keyboard lasts for five years. 

The RC-1000 can also connect to a 
larger controller, which features a Z80 
equivalent CPU, 4K RAM, and built-in 
dot matrix printer. Plug-in ROM packs 
supply Basic and a variety of programs. 




The RC-1000, pocket keyboard, and 
controller carry a suggested retail price 
of $340. 

Hattori Corporation of America, Con- 
sumer Electronics Div., 1330 W. Walnut 
Pkwy., Compton, CA 90220. (213) 640- 
8728. 

CIRCLE 439 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Personal Robot 
from Heath 




Heath, the company that introduced 
the Hero Robot, announces a new pre- 
programmed robot, the Hero Jr. 

Hero Jr. contains 32K of built-in rou- 
tines, a speaker, and an internal 100-year 
clock. With optional security transmitter 
and infrared motion detector, Hero Jr. 
functions as a guard robot. Hero moves 
by itself or via remote control. 

Hero Jr. is programmed to sing 
"Daisy" and "America" and with 
optional plug-in cartridges can sing 
other songs and play various games. 
Hero Jr. operates for four to six hours 
between charges, with an optional bat- 
tery accessory doubling the hours. 

Hero Jr. is priced at approximately 
$1000. 

Heath Co., Dept. 150-375, Hilltop 
Rd., Benton Harbor, MI 49022. (616) 
982-3200. 

CIRCLE 440 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



New Keyboard for PCjr 



IBM has introduced a new full-stroke 
keyboard for the PCjr to replace the old 
chiclet keyboard. New buyers of the PCjr 
will receive both keyboards until the 
supplies of the chiclet keyboard run out. 
Owners of the PCjr can obtain the new 




keyboard free of charge from authorized 
dealers. 

IBM also has released a memory ex- 
pansion unit and power supply that plugs 
into the right side of the original system 
unit, giving the PCjr up to 512K RAM. 
IBM is also selling a speech synthesizer 
card. 

IBM has set up a hotline to answer 
questions about the PCjr. 

IBM Corp. (800) 222-PCJR. 



108 



October 1984 « Creative Computing 



NEWPRODUCTS 



Three New Robots 
from Tomy 



Tomy, the toy manufacturer, has 
introduced three battery-operated ro- 
bots, named Dingbot, Verbot, and 
Omnibot, that are geared for children 
aged four and up. 

Dingbot rolls around, bumps into 
objects, adjusts course, and keeps on 




rolling. Verbot is a voice-activated robot 
that responds to eight separate verbal 
commands, which can be programmed 




into the robot via a remote control 
microphone transmitter. 

The top-of-the-line Omnibot, a two- 




foot high programmable robot, has a 
built-in microprocessor, microphone, 
digital clock, and cassette tape deck, a 
remote control transmitter, a moving 
grasping hand, and a detachable serving 
tray. 



Dingbot sells for $10. Verbot for $65, 
and Omnibot for $250. 

Tomy Corp., 901 E. 233 St., P.O. Box 
6252, Carson, CA 90749. (213) 549- 
2721. 

CIRCLE 442 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Three Robot Kits from OWI 



OWI has introduced three build-it- 
yourself robot kits: Memocon Crawler. 
Mr. Bootsman, and Medusa. 

Memocon Crawler, a battery-powered 
three wheeled robot, can be pro- 
grammed with a personal computer or 



Mr. Bootsman, a battery powered six- 
legged robot with two speeds, is con- 
trolled with a wired control box. 
Medusa, a battery-powered four legged 
robot, contains a sound sensor to start it 




with a special keyboard included in the 
kit. It holds up to 256 instructions, 
including sound, light, and movement, 
in 4K of RAM. 





walking about. It stops after a preset 
time. 

Memcon Crawler carries a suggested 
retail price of $74.95, Mr. Bootsman 
sells for $32.95, and Medusa costs 
$29.95. 

OWI Inc., 1160 Mahalo PI., Comp- 
ton, CA 90220. (213) 638-4732. 

CIRCLE 443 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



600 CPS Serial Printer 



Florida Data has introduced the Of- 
fice Serial Printer 130, a dot matrix se- 
rial printer with three modes of printing: 
draft at 600 cps, correspondence at 1 50 
cps, and letter quality at 100 cps. The 
OSP 130 holds up to ten type fonts, 
including Florentine Script, Mid Cen- 
tury Proportional, and Arabic. Optional 
graphics capability is available. 




a suggested retail 
graphics option 



The OSP 1 30 carries 
price of $3995. The 
costs $100. 

Florida Data Corp., 600D John Rodes 
Blvd., Melbourne, FL 32935. (305) 259- 
4700. 

CIRCLE 441 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



October 1 984 e Creative Computing 



109 



NEW PRODUCTS [ 



What's New hi 

Software 



Legal Accounting 
System 



Tandy has released the Precedent 
Legal Accounting System, an integrated 
time, billing, general ledger, and cash 
disbursements package based on Ameri- 
can Bar Association accounting stan- 
dards, for the Radio Shack TRS-80 
Model II and 12. 

The Precedent tracks the billing hours 
of up to 50 people, provides eight billing 



Tandy Corporation/Radio Shack 



formats, and includes a report generator. 
Radio Shack includes a monograph, 
"Simplified Accounting Systems and 
Concepts for Lawyers," published by the 
Legal Economics Section of the Ameri- 
can Bar Association, with each package. 

The Precedent carries a suggested 
retail price of $795. 

Tandy Corp.. 1800 One Tandy Cen- 
ter, Fort Worth, TX 76102. (817) 390- 
3300. 

CIRCLE 444 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Turbo Toolbox 
from Borland 



Borland International has unveiled 
Turbo Toolbox, a program development 
package designed to complement its 
Turbo Pascal compiler for Z80, 8088, 
and 8086 microprocessors. Turbo Tool- 
box assists programmers in developing 
Pascal programs containing search and 
sort capabilities. 

Turbo Toolbox consists of Turbo- 
ISAM (Index Sequential Access 
Method), Quicksort, and General 
Installation Program (GINST). Borland 
includes the source code with its 
programs. 

Turbo Toolbox carries a suggested Valley Dr., Scotts Valley, CA 95066. 
retail price of $49.95. (408) 438-8400. 

Borland International, 4113 Scotts circle 445 ON reader SERVICE card 




TK! Solver for TRS-80 
Model 4 

TKISolver. a mathematical analysis 



package for engineering, finance, and 
education applications from Software 
Arts, is now available for the Radio 
Shack TRS-80 Model 4. 

TKISolver, with 34 built-in mathemat- 
ical functions, solves equations in a frac- 
tion of the time it takes by hand. It also 



Potpourri of Programs 






American Training International has 
released two interactive disks. Spread- 
sheet Sampler and Word Processing Sam- 
pler, demonstrating popular software 
packages. Each disk offers ten minutes 
of hands-on use per program and runs 
on the IBM PC and compatibles. 

Spreadsheet Sampler contains Lotus 1- 
2-3, SuperCalc, Multiplan, VisiCalc. 
PeachCalc, Microplan, Perfect Calc, and 
EasyPlanner. Word Processing Sampler 
contains WordStar, Microsoft Word, 
MultiMate, Benchmark. Easy Writer II, 
PeachText, Perfect Writer, and Spell- 
binder. Each Sampler retails for $12.95. 

American Training International, 
12638 Beatrice St., Los Angeles, CA 
90066. (213) 823-1129. 

CIRCLE 446 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



uses successive approximations to solve 
an equation with unknown variables. 

TKISolver requires 128K RAM and 
retails for $299.99. 

Software Arts, 27 Mica Ln., Welles- 
ley, MA 02181. (617) 237-4000. 

CIRCLE 447 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



110 



October 1 984 c Creative Computing 



H NEWPRODUCTS 



MicroPro Releases 
Three New Titles 



MicroPro has added WordStar for 
PCjr, ChartStar. and TelMerge to their 
product lines. 

WordStar for PCjr is a customized 
version of the WordStar word processing 
program for the IBM PCjr. It includes 
an on-screen, interactive tutorial and is 
completely compatible with WordStar 
running on an IBM PC. 

ChartStar is a complete business 
graphics package providing line, bar, 
pie, organizational, scatter, and Gantt 
charts. It offers three-dimensional pie 
and bar charts, five different text fonts, 
and the ability to string several charts 
together to form a slide show. ChartStar 
can read data files from MicroPro's 
CakStar, InfoStar. and PlanStar. as well 




MicroPro 



as Lotus 1-2-3, VisiCalc, SuperCalc, and 
Multiplan. ChartStar runs on the IBM 
PC and requires 192K and a graphics 
printer or plotter. 

TelMerge converts WordStar docu- 
ment files into standard ASCII files and 
sends them through electronic mail ser- 
vices. TelMerge installs into WordStar 
version 3.3 on the IBM PC. 

ChartStar sells for $395. Suggested re- 
tail prices for WordStar for PCjr and 
TelMerge have not been set. 

MicroPro International Corp., 33 San 
Pablo Ave., San Rafael, CA 94903. (415) 
499-1200. 

CIRCLE 448 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Electronic Mail Program 
with Voice 



Texas Instruments has released 
EtherVoice, a software package that 
offers users of TI Professional Comput- 
ers tied into local area networks the op- 
tion of sending voice messages. 
EtherVoice operates in conjunction with 
EtherMail electronic mail system and 
the TI Speech Command system. 

EtherVoice records voices in two 



Texas 
Instruments 



* 



modes: high quality at 9600 baud and 
normal quality at 2400 baud. EtherVoice 
requires a TI Professional Computer, 
256K RAM, hard disk, and the Ether- 
Series LAN software. The package car- 
ries a suggested retail price of $150. 

Texas Instruments Inc., Data Systems 
Group, P.O. Box 809063, Dallas, TX 
75380. (800) 527-3500. 

CIRCLE 450 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



TRS-80 Utilities 



Keene Computing has introduced XU, 
a utilities package for Radio Shack 
Model I, III, 4, and 4P running LDOS, 
NEWDOS. MULTIDOS, DOSPLUS, 
and TRSDOS 1.3 and 6.1. XU includes a 
RAM disk, string search, command file 
linker, file copier, and ten other utility 
programs. XU costs $45. 

Keene Computing Services Co., Box 
13044, College Station, TX 77841. 

CIRCLE 463 ON READER SERVICE CARD 

En Fleur has released Windowpad. an 
integrated windowing and note process- 
ing utility for the TRS-80 Model II and 
III running TRSDOS. Windowpad loads 



into the top of memory, functions 
independently of Basic programs, and 
permits short text writing and editing 
without interrupting the primary pro- 
gram. Windowpad sells for $2 1 .25. 

En Fleur Corp., 2494 Sun Valley Cir- 
cle, Silver Spring, MD 20906. (301) 598- 
4532. 

CIRCLE 464 ON READER SERVICE CARD 

Scilab has announced Autoref, a util- 
ity that searches through a manuscript, 
pulls out citations, and automatically 
creates a bibliography. Autoref runs on 
the TRS-80 Model I, II, III, 4, 12, and 
16 under any operating system. CP/M 
and MS-DOS versions are also available. 
Autoref retails for $89.95. 

Scilab, Inc., P.O. Box 614, 
Guilderland, NY 12084. (518) 355-3363. 

CIRCLE 451 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



dBase III for IBM PC 



Ashton-Tate has released dBase III. a 
relational database management system 
for the IBM PC and compatibles. dBase 
III requires 256K RAM, two disk 
drives, and PC-DOS 2.0 or greater. 

dBase III can hold more than two bil- 
lion records per database with up to 128 
fields per record. It uses the same dBase 
programming language used in dBase 




II, which allows for customized 
application programs. dBase III con- 
tains full on-line help and an extensive 
tutorial. 

dBase III retails for $695. A demon- 
stration and tutorial disk sell for $9.95. 

Ashton-Tate, 10150 West Jefferson 
Blvd., Culver City, CA 90230. (213) 
204-5570. 

CIRCLE 449 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Communications 
Package for TRS-80 
Color Computer 



Computerware has introduced Color 
Connection II for Flex and Color Con- 
nection II for OS-9, modem software 
packages for the TRS-80 Color Computer. 
Both menu-driven programs support 300 
baud with full or half duplex, read and 
write standard ASCII files, support auto- 
matic dialing, and include a user-defined 
macro feature for fast input of ID and 
passwords. 

Color Connection II for Flex and Color 
Connection for OS-9 sell for $5 1 .95 each . 

Computerware. Box 668, 4403 Man- 
chester Ave., Suite 103, Encinitas, CA 
92024.(619)436-3512. 

CIRCLE 452 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



October 1 984 * Creative Computing 



111 



INTRODUCING MICROSCI. 
THE VERY PERSONAL COMPUTER. 




If you're buying a personal 
computer for the first time, you don't 
need the biggest and brightest to 
begin with. 

Think simple. 

Sensibly priced. 

Less than $799. 

Of course, you'll want some 
initial training to get you started. 
The Havac comes with its own 
disk operating system and "Train- 
ing" software like Typewriter, Calculator and Havacom for communi- 
cations. And once you've mastered the basics, you can use software 
from the largest selection in the world. 

Apple® Software. 

Game- like computers that are comparably priced can't offer 
software like Havac can. Rut if games are your bag, Havac has a Joy- 
stick/Paddle port. And a port for RS-232C, 
Parallel/Serial printer or an additional disk 
drive. Which we also make. Havac already 
has one disk drive built in. 

So, if the biggest and brightest are beyond 

your budget, take a look at The NlUi Best Personal 
fflfflU • ^ ^^^gComputer. The Havac from MICROSCI. Ask 

&jf \ your dealer for a simple demonstration or 
write: MICROSCI, 2158 Hathaway, 
Santa Ana. CA 92705 (714) 241-5600. 





/y-sci 



MICROSCI 

A STANOUN CO 



•Buill in MK dice di 



x registered Trademark of Apple Compurer Iik 

■t color Krapeiics a cursor kev, and ? .pecial function key. Compact and transportable Made In America 

CIRCLE 104 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



CHOOSING 
AN INTEGRATED 

SOFTWARE PACKAGE 



Haw to Buy an Integrated Software Package 
Integrated Packages: A Closer look 
Previews of Coming Attractions 
Directory of Integrated Software Packages 



Manufacturer Listing 



v 



H 



How to Buy an Integrated 
Software Packaae 



ANK 



Iast year every software producer was claiming that his 
software was "user-friendly." This year's glamour term is 
"integrated." It is much simpler for software to be integrated 
■than it is to be easy to use. All "integrated" implies is that 
there are two or more functions that work together. 

Leaving aside the minimal definition, integration has come 
to imply more in computer software. 



Although integration is claimed for 
packages that do not meet these stan- 
dards, we are beginning to expect that 
integrated software packages will: 

• contain several parts that are 
normally separate application 
programs. 

• share data easily between the 
parts. 

• use a common command set. 

Software that meets those three re- 
quirements can be, but is not necessarily, 
more useful than a collection of stand- 
alone application programs. If the func- 
tions are useful in a common task, as 
spreadsheets and graphics are useful in 
producing management reports, then 
people who have to do that task should 
find it easier to use one program than 
two. However, people who need only one 
of the functions may find it easier to use a 
package that offers only what they need. 

Power in software comes at a price. I 
need a much more powerful word pro- 
cessing program than my wife does. My 
documentation writer needs a more pow- 
erful program than I do. My wife usually 
writes only letters and needs a simple 
program that is easy to learn and use. I 
use a word processor to write programs. 1 
need to be able to copy and move infor- 
mation easily, especially to take parts of 
old programs to use in new ones. Our 
writer prepares software manuals. She 
needs facilities for processing large docu- 
ments. I use yet another program for 
writing articles like this one. It is a little 
more powerful than my wife's letter writ- 
ing tool, but easier to use than my pro- 
gramming tool. 

If I can't even find a single word 
processor that will handle all my writing 
needs, can I expect to find a single inte- 



grated program that will handle all my 
needs? Probably not! It is not enough for 
an integrated package to "have" the 
applications you need: it must also 
be appropriate to your needs and do 
those applications well. 

The second area of concern in inte- 
grated software is the ease of sharing 
data. You should be able to pass data 
from one application to another as easily 
as you can copy a sentence from one part 
of a word processing document to an- 
other. There should be no need to access 
the disk or create a file to go from one 
application to another. If you do have to 
create a file, then you should not have to 
do any intermediate processing of the 
file. 

Sometimes you will configure pro- 
grams or modify them for special pur- 
poses. Modifying programs raises an- 
other important issue— copy protection. 
If I modify a program for a specific pur- 
pose, I want to keep it separate from the 
original. I can not do that if the program 
is copy protected. If you modify a copy 
protected program and something goes 
wrong, you have destroyed the disk. Even 
without modification, all disks fail even- 
tually, and I am unwilling to make the 
survival of my business dependent on a 
few magnetic signals in a layer of rust on 
a single piece of cheap plastic. 



Wi 



j hen considering how easy it is 
' to pass data from one module 
of an integrated package to 
another, it is also important to 
consider how easy it is to pass that data to 
a different application program. I had my 
company mailing list on V^rsaform on 
the Apple II. When my mailing list got 
too big for Versaform, it was extremely 



difficult to transfer and convert to an- 
other system— so difficult that I eventu- 
ally abandoned the list. Mrsaform uses 
the UCSD operating system, and al- 
though I purchased a communications 
program for that system, I could never 
get it to work. Therefore, I now avoid the 
UCSD operating system. 

In general, you can expect trouble 
transferring files between operating sys- 
tems. Aladin claims to be able to read 
files from both MS-DOS and the UCSD 
system. I will never again put a signifi- 
cant amount of information into a sys- 
tem that will not write straight ASCII 
files onto a common operating system. 
That way if the program becomes unsuit- 
able, I can at least move the data, over a 
modem if necessary, to a new program or 
a new computer. 

The third desirable feature of an in- 
tegrated software package, a common 
command set, is subject to more limita- 
tions. The purpose of separate applica- 
tions is to do different things. If a word 
processor performed the same functions 
as a database manager, you would need 
only one of them. Because they do have 
different functions, however, they need 
different commands. But there are many 
functions that are common to different 



S-2 SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEET SECTION 






OCTOBER 1984 



- 










i 

4 


r 


332^ 




4 


IW 


f 


i^^ 




%* 


^ 


« 



k selection of keyboard templates from integrated software packages. 
These handy plastic or cardboard references provide help in remembering 
the large number of commands necessary to implement the many 
functions offered by often complex software package. 



applications, including saving and load- 
ing files, asking for help, and simple edit- 
ing. 

Newer computers have dedicated 
keys, like the page up, page down, home, 
end. insert, and delete keys on the IBM 
PC. Most applications take advantage of 
these, and to the extent that they do, there 
is less need for integrated software. There 
are even some common uses developing 
for other keys, such as the Fl for a Help 
key. But it is unlikely that all the keys will 
acquire standard uses, and until they do, 
an integrated software package that uses 
the same keys to do the same tasks will be 
easier to learn and use than separate ap- 
plications. But it is more important to 
have a good command set than it is to 
have a common command set. 

I wish selecting a program could be as 
easy as asking: "What is the best inte- 
grated software package?" There can 
never be such a package, simply be- 
cause different people have different 

CREATIVE COMPUTING 



needs. Unfortunately, there are two ques- 
tions to be answered: "What are my 
needs?" and "Is there an integrated soft- 
ware package that meets my needs?" The 
most popular integrated software pack- 
ages have three major functions— spread- 
sheets, word processing, and data base 
management— and two supporting func- 
tions—graphics and data communica- 
tions. Some have additional functions 
as well. 

In most cases, one of the three major 
functions is dominant. If your needs re- 
volve around columns of numbers, you 
will probably find a package built around 
a spreadsheet, like Symphony, best for 
you. If your needs revolve around word 
processing, a package built around a 
word processor, like PeachText 5000. 
might be most useful. You might also 
want a special purpose integrated pack- 
age. Perhaps the most ambitious inte- 
grated product line is Prentice Hall's The 
Profit Center. It has 21 modules built 
around an accounting system, which is 



really a special purpose database. 

It is also important to determine if a 
package has any serious flaws for your 
application. The day before I wrote this, I 
was talking to the owner of a Health Food 
store who keeps his inventory on a 
TRS-80. With his first inventory pack- 
age, from Radio Shack, he went to print 
out a purchase order. Thirty hours later, 
he pressed the break key. His Radio 
Shack salesman told him he had ordered 
too many items from one supplier! 

The most elementary serious flaws 
are missing features. If you need a 
spreadsheet, a package like Offix, which 
doesn't have one, is not the right package 
for you. If you do financial calculations 
frequently you might insist on a spread- 
sheet that calculates net present value 
and internal rate of return. But other 
flaws can destroy the utility of a program. 
The Silicon Office has many nice features 
in its word processor. But the response 
time, including cursor movement 
through the document, is so slow that I 
cant bear to use it. The most important 
rule is: think through your needs thor- 
oughly before you buy. 

In general, it is not possible to buy an 
integrated software package based on ei- 
ther advertisements or reading the man- 
ual. During this assignment I wanted to 
select a package for my own company. 
Many times I would read a press release, 
an advertisement, the jacket copy, or a 
manual and get really excited about a 
product. Then I would start to use it and 
find it completely unsuitable. 

In particular, I am concerned about 
absence of problems, ease of use, ease of 
learning, and speed. For that reason, 
there are several places on the charts that 
follow in which I offer my judgment on a 
program rather than an objective score. 
For example, though I am not a fast typ- 
ist, I can't use a word processor that 
drops characters when typing or over- 
shoots when I am moving the cursor 
through text. The category *OK for fast 
typists?' is my assessment of the prob- 
lems I encountered. (What was my de- 
cision for my own company? I haven't 
decided yet, but I have narrowed the 
choices down to Symphony, ITSoftware, 
and InteSoft) ■ 



SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEET SECTION S-3 






Integrated Packages: 

A Closer It-' 




PRODUCTS FOR 
APPLE COMPUTERS 



III E-Z Pi«<es/Appl«work .//// E-/. 
Pieces is an integrated software package 
for the Apple III; Appleworks is the iden- 
tical package for the Apple 1 1. It combines 
an excellent database manager with a 
good spreadsheet and word processor. 
Although not as fast, powerful, or full 
featured as Symphony, this is a strong 
business package that should meet most 
people's needs. It is the only integrated 
software package that I noticed in daily 
use at C "native Computing. If you own an 
Apple III. you don't have to wonder 
which integrated software package to 
buy. (Apple II owners have a choice.) 
Haba Systems also- sells Graph'n'Calc. an 
add-on for business graphics and is de- 
velopinga communications program. 

PractiCoU H/PractiCalc II is sold as an 
integrated package for the Apple II series. 
It has a good spreadsheet with limited 
database and extremely limited word 
processing and graphics functions. I 
wouldn't dream of using their "word 
processing" for anything other than put- 
ting titles on my spreadsheet reports. The 
manual is poorly done and hard to use. 




fJane brings the graphic icons and 
mouse from the Macintosh to the Apple 
II series. While Jane includes windows, 
word processing, spreadsheet, and mail- 
ing list management in an integrated 
package, none of the features is strong 
enough to stand alone. The list manager 
limits you to ten fields that cannot exceed 
25 characters, the word processor can be 



used for form letters only if you manually 
cut and paste the address data from the 
mailing list to your letter using windows, 
and the spreadsheet was too limited tq 
run our benchmark. 

I did not have the mouse and was not 
happy using a joystick. It took me more 
than two minutes to pick up the scissors 
icon, move to the word Friday in a sample 
letter, cut (delete) it, pick up the insert 
icon, move back to my text location, and 
insert the word Saturday. Fortunately, 
you can substitute control keys for the 
icons; Control-E for scissors and Con- 
trol-W for insert. Jane is definitely not a 
manager's productivity tool. However, it 
may be one of the few practical home 
computer applications. It seems to offer a 
lot that my 11-year-old son can use in 
doing his school work. This is the first 
word processing package that I did not 
consider too intimidating for him. Al- 
though the word processing does not 
work with my 80-column card, the pro- 
gram uses graphics to provide lowercase, 
using the Escape key to switch case. The 
manual is clear and well done, mercifully 
brief, and well illustrated. The program 
also has a help disk with animated help 
messages. 



PRO , f OR IBM 

■SONALCOMPU1I 



IBM PC Part I: Best Buys; 
Full Featured Products 

Symphony/Lotus is the current king of 
the integrated software package makers. 
After all, it was 1-2-3 that dominated the 
market last year as the best selling soft- 
ware program. Symphony is their at- 
tempt to stay on top. There has been 
some disparagement of Symphony by 
those who say that all Lotus did was add 4 
and 5 (word processing and communica- 
tions) to 1, 2, and 3 (spreadsheet, data- 
base, and graphics). Symphony may have 
limits, but it is an excellent program. One 
problem is that it needs a great deal of 
memory. Our spreadsheet benchmark 
ran out of memory at 2145 cells in a 384K 
Compaq. The other problem with Sym- 
phony is that it is deeply rooted in the 
spreadsheet. There are many database 
functions, but if you need a very powerful 



database manager, you may need a dif- 
ferent program. 

Symphony is too powerful to be easy 
to learn. You must sift through several 
levels of menus to execute a simple com- 
mand, and it is not always easy to figure 
out what sequence of commands to use. 
Symphony has a powerful macro lan- 
guage that allows the creation of com- 
plete applications with automatic, 
prompted input and switching from one 
task to another. 

Lotus has even provided "hooks" 
into Symphony so that other software 
houses can add machine language fea- 
tures that are not already included. We 
may be seeing dictionaries added to the 
word processor or 3-D paint routines 
added to the graphics. The word proc- 
essor in Symphony is excellent. 

ONE OF THE MOST 
important questions to 
ask about integrated 
software is "Are the 
applications good 
enough to stand alone?" 

ITSoftware scries/ Instead ofwritinga 
series of integrated software programs, 
ITSoftware (a division of Martin Mar- 
ietta Corp.) seems to have licensed some 
of the best free standing programs on the 
market and developed an interface to 
link them. For example, their spread- 
sheet, Calclt, is licensed from DataMcn- 
sion Corp., and their word processor, 
Writlt, is actually MultiMate. The data- 
base manager, Kccplt. was written in- 
home and is the application used to inte- 
grate the rest of the series. Calclt comes 
with a disk labeled Interface to Keeplt, 
and Writlt has a format conversion utility 
to accept ASCII and DIF files. 

One of the most important ques- 
tions to ask about integrated software is 
"Are the applications good enough to 
stand alone?" In this case, the answer is 
an obvious yes. However, the package 
does exhibit the problems you would ex- 
pect from integrating separate programs. 
The programs do not have a common 
command structure, and the manuals 



S-4 SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEET SECTION 









OCTOBER 1984 



ffHW3m±a@a 



are of uneven quality. For example, the 
W'ritlt manual gives a full explanation of 
setting up your disks, while Calclt tells 
you to see the DOS manual for instruc- 
tions on backing up your disks and 
makes no mention of putting DOS on 
your program disk. 

Nevertheless, this is one series that I 
really like. The series is backed by a huge 
company with a solid background in in- 
formation processing. The individual 
applications are outstanding, and inter- 
faces are provided to make them work 
together. None of the disks is copy pro- 
tected, but the communications pro- 
gram, Linklt, contains the best anti- 
piracy feature I have seen. 

The program is designed so that it 
cannot communicate with a backup of 
itself. If you look at the spreadsheet 
benchmark, you will see that Calclt is 
one of the fastest spreadsheets. Actually, 
Calclt took three seconds to do the calcu- 
lations and the other five seconds to 
rewrite the screen! Other packages in- 
clude Maillt (3270 Electronic Mail using 
the Irma board), Asklt (a mouse driven 
front end for Keeplt). Showlt (graphics), 
Statlt (statistics), Editlt (program editor), 
Passlt (file transfer), and Sortlt. 

InteSoft twdnflnteCalc is one of the 
best full featured spreadsheets on the 
market. It is now serving as the anchor for 
a series of stand-alone applications that 
work together. The word processor, Inte- 
Word, is also very good, including sup- 
port for proportional spacing on the 
printer. About the only feature I didn't 
like was the inability of the backspace key 
to wrap to the previous line. InteMate is 
an integrating shell that can integrate not 
only the InteSoft applications, but other 
programs as well, passing data between 
applications. InteMate also includes cus- 
tomizable menu screens, a calculator, an 
editor, and a notepad. I nteBa.se. the data- 
base manager for this series, has not been 
released. Each of the packages comes 
with a huge, heavy awkward manual with 
full size pages in a three-ring binder. The 
presentation of information is good to 
very good. This series illustrates one of 
the drawbacks of packages that are not 
copy protected; it took more than two 
hours of formatting disks and copying 
files to set up the program and make 
backup and working disks. 



IBM PC Part II: Best Buys; 
Light duty programs 

Electric 99»k/Electric Desk, from 
Alpha Software, is a clear winner. 
Among the packages tested, it is far easier 
than average to install, learn, and use. 
The word processing and spreadsheet 
functions arc as strong as stand-alone 
packages. The database manager is lim- 
ited, lacking calculated fields, and there 
are no graphics functions. The first day I 
tried it, I taught a co-worker to use the 
word processor in ten minutes. 

The program comes on a single 
disk, and all applications are available at 
once. If you have enough memory, you 
can have nine spreadsheets, nine data- 
bases, nine word processing documents, 
and two communication environments 
open at the same time. It is easy to shift 
data between applications. 

There is a mistake in the installation 
instructions, which fail to tell you to copy 
COMMAND.COM to your masterdisks. 
The system will not work until you do. 
This system worked fine in my single 
drive Compaq, and a version is even 
available for the PCjr, using a ROM car- 
tridge to make up for the limited mem- 
ory of that system. Special abilities in- 
clude automatic phone dialing (with a 
Smart Modem) using phone numbers 
from the database, form letters, and a 
good communications program. Setting 
up the program for my printer was also 
quite simple, using the word processor to 
change the configuration file. 

The database allows up to five index 
fields, and automatically updates the in- 
dexes whenever a record is created or 
changed. There is a powerful search facil- 
ity. This is a good system for the user who 
does not need the heavy duty power of 
the multi-disk systems. Certainly home 
users, small business people, and man- 
agers who need only limited databases 
should be happy with the Electric Desk 
unless they need graphics. 



The IBM Assistant Series/ IBM's own 

entry in the integrated software market is 
a repackaged pfs Series from Software 
Publishing. These products are best 
sellers that have been favorably reviewed. 
Because they are often suggested as good 
programs for beginners, I recommended 
PFS: Write to a business associate. She 
has had a great deal of trouble learning to 
use it, so they may be overrated for novice 
i'se. My own assistant blew her only op- 
portunity to make a backup of the Writ- 
ing Assistant; her backup doesn't work at 
all and you only get one try. I personally 
found the packages easy to learn and use, 
and the manuals adequate, though 
poorly indexed. The spreadsheet pack- 
age. Planning Assistant, is not yet avail- 
able. I would prefer the Electric Desk for 
beginners, but these are good packages. 

Off \x/Otfi -v is an easy to use, lightweight 
database manager with minimal word 
processing and a form letter generator. It 
comes in a small vinyl package shaped 
like a file folder, for $149. When you start 
the program, the screen displays two fil- 
ing cabinets, with three drawers in each. 
At first, five drawers are labeled Empty 
Drawer and one Miscellaneous. 

At any time, pressing the Fl key 
gives you a menu of the commands avail- 
able at the current screen, and the F2 key 
provides help messages for the current 
screen. You select a drawer and press O to 
open it. You then see eight file folders 
with titles on top. Again, you select a 
folder, and press T to take it out. You then 
press O to open the folder. This will give 
you a menu of reports in that folder. You 
then select a report and open it. Now you 
can do word processing, define a form, 
do data entry, or make a report. 

I love the manual for Of fix. It is a 
16-page, 3" by 6" brochure. The system is 
easy enough to use, and the tutorial les- 
sons and help screens are good enough 
that nothing else is needed. Although the 
word processing is minimal, this is a very 
handy database system, allowing 100 
folders in each of the six drawers with an 
unlimited number of documents in each 
folder. Each folder can hold up to 
1,000,000 characters on a hard disk or 
one disk full of characters on a floppy 
disk. Depending on memory documents 
can be from 30,000 to 200,000 charac- 
ters. 



CREATIVE COMPUTING 



SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEET SECTION S-5 



Integrated Packages (cont'd) 




IBM PC Part III: Special 
purpose and other products. 

The Profit Center/ Probably the most 
ambitious series of integrated software 
programs is The Profit C enter, from Pren- 
tice Hall. The Profit Center is a series of 
21 modules of accounting and business 
software programs. The four modules I 
received included General Accounting, 
Ward Processing, Time and Information 
Management, and a Master Menu. 
These packages are available bundled as 
The Complete Office for $375. 

The Master Menu is used to access 
and manage the system, and each appli- 
cation must be installed, a process that 
generates reference files on each of the 
other system disks. Each part of the pro- 
gram includes 50 to 100 files. The spread 
sheet has not yet been released. The Busi- 
ness word processor has a great deal of 
power, but is not easy to use and has a 
confusing menu. 

Corporal* MBA/Corporate MBA. from 
Context, may be the most powerful pack- 
age you can use without having to switch 
disks while using it. It is superb at 
presenting information graphically on 
the screen. You can have dozens of 
graphs packed into individual cells and 
expand any of those cells to fill a window 
or even the screen (before expansion, 
they just display the letters GRF to indi- 
cate that a graph is stored in that cell.) 



You can have four windows at a 
time. Thus, if you wanted to use pie 
charts to display the relative sales of your 
product mix for a series of years, you 
could easily select years and display 4 
charts on the screen at once. Since you 
can store a great deal in a single cell, in- 
cluding a letter or a database input form 
as well as a graph, this is a marvelous tool 
for a person who thinks graphically. 

Corporate MBA supports main- 
frame communications (with the Irma 
board) and electronic mail. Unlike its 
predecessor. Context MBA, Corporate 
MBA operates under MS-DOS, allowing 
you to share data created by other pro- 
grams easily. The data input format for 
the database is especially easy to use, and 
MBA's macro command language allows 
sophisticated turnkey applications to be 
developed. 

I discovered two drawbacks to Cor- 
porate MBA. First, it can be terribly slow. 
It took three minutes and eight seconds 
to recalculate our 2500-cell spreadsheet 
benchmark. That is 23 times as long as 
bileCalc and Calclt took to perform the 
exact same operation. Another indica- 
tion of slow speed was the 15 minutes that 
program took to replicate a row of 25 
formulas into 99 additional rows. 

The other drawback is the editor, 
which, like the other programs reviewed 
that are written in Pascal, is a modified 
version of the UCSDeditor. Unlike Jaek2 
and Encore!, the modifications were ex- 
tensive enough to make the editor accept- 



S-6 SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEET SECTION 



able for word processing, but I do not like 
the design, complexity, potential for los- 
ing data, or methodology of that editor. 
You enter the editor in a command mode 
and must enter insert mode to enter text, 
then press Control-C to keep your text 
and return to command mode. If you 
press Escape instead of Control-C. even 
by mistake, you lose your text. You also 
waste a lot of time going to and from 
command mode instead of going directly 
from one operation to another. 

knk2/Jack2 is a reasonably easy to use, 
light duty integrated package. It has a de- 
cent word processor and a good database 
manager. While it does not have a spread- 
sheet, the database manager offers most 
spreadsheet functions. I could get only 
1000 of the 2500 cells for the spreadsheet 
benchmark into my 256K Seequa Cha- 
meleon before I ran out of memory 

Bar and line graphs can be produced 
within the database, but that is the extent 
of the graphics functions. While I found 
the word processor tolerable, it is a modi- 
fied UCSD editor and some simple com- 
mands can take several keystrokes. 
When you type fast, the keystrokes are 
stored in a buffer until the screen can 
catch up with the display. 

Jack2 is a fairly sophisticated, yet 
easy to use database manager. You design 
a form with your layout, titles, data for- 
mats, calculation rules, and even graphs 
specified. Then you access a record and 
fill in the data. You can even have proc- 
essed text and information merged from 
other records in a form. Because Jack2 
uses the UCSD p-system, has no commu- 
nications built in, and is not set up for 
external data, it is not a good choice if 
you want to use data created by other 
programs. 

Intormi/Hncore is an extremely powerful 
financial modeling system with several 
flaws. The "word processing" is simply 
the UCSD Pascal line oriented editor 
with the prompts translated into plain 
English. That is an improvement over the 
original, but it is unsatisfactory for any 
document larger than a crude memo. 
The spreadsheet is rule oriented (you 
enter a calculation rule for a row or col- 
umn instead of putting a formula in a cell 
and replicating it). 

There was not enough memory in 

OCTOBER 1984 



the 256K Seequa to run the spreadsheet 
benchmark. After calculating 2000 cells 
in 21 seconds, the program ran out of 
memory and locked up. I had to use Ctrl- 
Alt-Del to restart the program. Since the 
UCSD p-system makes it hard to import 
data, the editor is unsatisfactory, and the 
spreadsheet crashes, I would avoid this 
system. 

However, since the package includes 
built-in functions for ACRS, straight line 
and accelerated depreciation, internal 
rate of return, loan amortization, net 
present value, tax loss carry-forward, 
and US. Tax schedules for individuals, 
married couples, corporations, estates 
and trusts, people who have financial ap- 
plications will want to consider this pro- 
gram further. 

Graphics functions include five 
types of bar charts, including floating 
bar charts, point graphs, line and shaded 
line graphs, pie charts, scatter charts, 
and Gantt charts. Charts can be sent to a 
plotter. This is very definitely a financial 
modeling system rather than a general 
purpose database manager. 

Window Master /\\ mdow Master, from 
Structured Software group, seems to be a 
powerful program, but the documenta- 
tion is so poor that it is extremely difficult 
to learn. This program allows you to run 
concurrently up to seven programs, and 
you can even mix MS-DOS and CiyM-86 
programs. Window master alone is $295, 
but there is a package deal that includes 
Window Master, the Magic Window 
spreadsheet. Word Right word processor, 
NAD name and address system, and Ana- 
lyst data entry and report writing system 
for $495. 

One of the most attractive features of 
this package is its macro programming 
language. Script, which allows you to de- 
velop applications that run automatically 
with pauses for appropriate user input. 
You can use the window manager with 
other programs, including 1-2-3, and you 
can transfer data between applications. 

After a half day of trying to run this 
package, I succeeded in running the 
spreadsheet benchmark only by crashing 
the demo disk. 1 never succeeded in in- 
stalling the word processor or the data- 
base manager. The installation instruc- 
tions in the MS-DOS package were for 
the CF/M version. While the Analyst da- 

CREATIVE COMPUTING 



tabase manager allows up to 50 fields per 
record, each record is limited to a maxi- 
mum of 255 characters. Window Master 
is really an operating environment that 
competes with Microsoft Windows, 
VisiOn, and Desq. In general, these win- 
dowing packages require accomplished 
programmers to install them. 

Aladin /Aladin is a powerful database 
manager. While it does not have a word 
processor, it has an interface that allows 
you to use documents created on word 
processors to produce form letters and 
reports with Aladin data. Although the 
documentation describes the Aladin cal- 
culator as a spreadsheet, it is really a re- 
port generator for the information in the 
database. Its modified B-tree index is 
said to be capable of accessing any one of 
a million records in less than one second. 
This product is better positioned as a 
competitor for dBase III than Framework 
or Symphony. I would consider Aladin 
for a serious information management 
application. 

The Ultimate /The Ultimate was really 
designed as a form letter processor for 
use with the US. Post Office's now dis- 
continued ECOM service. The commu- 
nications are so specific for that system 



concept of data tables (Table/Maker) and 
offers its own approach to database man- 
agement. The new integrated package in- 
cludes word processing, database, 
spreadsheet, list processing, graphics, 
data transfer, file management, and 
spelling checker. Actually, that list prom- 
ises more than T/Maker delivers. For ex- 
ample, the "graphics" is limited to bar 
charts, the word processor is a line editor 
without word wrap, and files are limited 
to about 800 records, though you can 
link more than one file in a database. 

The center of activity in T/Maker is 
the editor. T/Maker is command driven, 
with cryptic commands and minimal 
use of prompts and menus. Much of the 
time, the screen just asks WHAT NEXT? 
and you must answer with the correct 
command, though the PC version allows 
you to enter C for a command menu. 
T/Maker is not up to the competition in 
the MS-DOS market, but their CP/M 80 
products are worth considering. 

Aura /Aura comes on ten disks with word 
processing, spread sheet, database man- 
agement, and business graphics. There 
are two large manuals, a tutorial manual 
and a reference manual. The system is 
designed for a hard disk, and although it 
will work on a floppy based system, it is 



ONE OF THE MOST attractive features of this 
package is its macro programming language, 
Script, which allows you to develop applications 
that run automatically with pauses for appro- 
priate user input. 



that they are essentially useless now. The 
word processor is good for "quick and 
dirty" jobs like memos or class notes, but 
it is primarily line oriented and offers 
little power. The spelling checker is very 
slow and the database manager is a sim- 
ple name and address system. Although 
this system had an original price of $495, 
our local software store is selling it for 
$99— mainly to people who ask for a 
mailing list program. 

T/Makar Integrated Software /V 

Maker was one of the earliest database 
programs. It is organized around the 



too clumsy to be usable; it takes five disks 
just to start using a spreadsheet. Because 
the system makes direct calls to hard- 
ware, it is not recommended for compati- 
bles other than the Compaq; it gave my 
Seequa indigestion. The system is slow; it 
took 15 minutes to copy one row of calcu- 
lations to 99 more rows for our spread- 
sheet benchmark, then another 15 min- 
utes to delete those rows for the iteration 
test. 

We tested it on a 448K IBM PC, and 
63% of memory was still available after 
entering our benchmark. The system 
makes good use of color, and has excep- 



SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEET SECTION S-7 



Integrated Packages (cont'd) 




tional graphics, including a free draw 
routine. It is organized around the data- 
base and oners a good level of integra- 
tion, allowing you to put individual fields 
from the database into spreadsheet cells, 
drop portions of the spreadsheets and 
graphs into word processing documents, 
and draw graphs without leaving the 
spreadsheet. It does not, however, fail 
gracefully; when I anticipated changing a 
disk and put it in early the system just 
locked up. 

Til* Silken OH'tf/The Silicon Office 
claims to be the European leader in inte- 
grated software. Instead of copy protect- 
ing the software, they provide a circuit 
board and an encoded ROM cartridge. 
You can copy the software as much as you 
want, but unless the right ROM is at- 
tached to the circuit board, it won't run. 
Instead of a three-ring binder, they pro- 
vide three oversize perfect bound book- 
lets that refuse to lie flat and take up too 
much space for most work stations. 

Silicon Office is really a database 
system with a text editor. There is no 
spreadsheet, graphics, or communica- 
tions. I found the response time in the 
text editor too slow; I would always over- 
shoot when I tried to delete characters or 
move to a position in the text. The data- 
base is powerful, but you have to learn 
their query language before using it. At 
the suggested retail price of $795, it offers 



much less than the competition. 

Exe«ute< Series On* Plus/ Sometimes 
you must read between the lines to dis- 
cover a flaw in a package. With this pack- 
age, the minimum memory requirement 



of 192K. was also listed as the optimum 
amount of memory. Later in the manual, 
the reference to out of memory errors 
referred to text files approaching 64K, 
and the spreadsheet benchmark ran out 
of memory after 1450 cells. 

I suspect that this package was de- 
signed to limit data to 64,000 characters. 
This is a serious shortcoming in a spread- 
sheet or word processor, though it is per- 
fectly reasonable in a database manager, 
where most information is stored on disk 
and only the current record is available in 
memory. 

The word processor has problems 
with overshooting. Since the spreadsheet 
is also slow, and the command structure 
is clumsy and inconvenient, this package 
should be thought of as a database man- 
ager with extra functions, not as a com- 
petitor to Symphony. The report gen- 
erator, Execu Reporter, is capable of 
combining data from six files to pro- 
duce a report with a data format up to 
300 characters by 1000 lines. Execulink 
provides communication to a main- 
frame. Additional programs include fi- 
nancial analysis for banking and finance 
institutions. ■ 



INTEGRATING PROGRAMS VS. 
INTEGRATED PROGRAMS 



IN ADDITION TO THE INTEGRATED SOFTWARE PROGRAMS 
described in this section, there is another class of programs that is 
intended to integrate software packages from different suppliers. 
These packages may offer a number of features, including data 
transfer between programs; concurrent execution of programs; print 
spooling; calculators; notepads; windowing; combining text, spread- 
sheets and graphs into single documents for printing; advanced 
graphics; and other features. Two of these programs, InteMate and 
Window Master, because they are also sold with bundled applications, 
are described in the reviews. The best known package of this type, 
VisiOn from VisiCorp, is also sold with dedicated applications avail- 
able. Other contenders in this market are Microsoft Windows and 
Desg from Quarterdeck Software. 

Press'n'Plot, from American Programmers Guild, combines 
screen images from graphing programs and text from word processing 
programs, and allows further processing such as rotating images, 
moving text around, clipping, and sizing. Press'n'Plot sells for $149, 
and a stripped down version that just captures screen images and 
prints them is available for $49. ■ 



S-8 SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHET SECTION 



OCTOBER 1984 



Previews of 
Coming Attractions 




Since integrated software packages are the current fashion, 
by the time this magazine comes out new ones will 
probably be appearing at the rate of about once a week. 
What follows is a summary of the press releases and 
demonstrations of future products that I have seen recently. Many 
will be available by the time you read this; others may never be 
released. 



SOME LIGHT DUTY 
PROGRAMS 



Creative S»ri«s/ Creative Software re- 
leased Creative Writer. Creative Filer, and 
Creative Calc for the Commodore 64 in 
early 1984. Versions forthe IBM PC and jr 
and the Apple II are due to be released 
this year. This is a budget series with a list 
price of $49.95 for each package. Al- 
though the three packages are advertised 
as integrated, the 32-page booklet that 
serves as the Creative Calc manual makes 
no mention of using data from or passing 

CREATIVE COMPUTING 



it to the other two programs. Neverthe- 
less, this is the obvious choice for Com- 
modore owners, and possibly for Apple 
owners as well. I recommend Electric 
Desk on the PCjr, but the Creative series 
will be available for half the price. 

Gat Organized/ Electronic Arts has 
announced Get Organized, due in Sep- 
tember, with seven applications. These 
include word processing, telecommuni- 
cations, data manager, address list, index 
card file, note pad, and form letters. The 
package does not have a spreadsheet, and 
its graphics are limited. Get Organized 'is 
text oriented rather than database or 



spreadsheet centered, requires an IBM 
PC with 256K of memory, and will cost 
$199. 



MAINSTREAM PRODUCTS 



rramawark// - 'w>!<'>t ork, from Ashton 
Tate, was due out in time for this article, 
but missed its shipping date. This prod- 
uct, which was exhibited at PC Expo, is 
positioned against Symphony. It con- 
siders all functions parts of documents 
and should be taken seriously because 
AshtonTate has developed a large net- 
work of applications developers who have 
(continued on page S-M) 



SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEET SECTION S-9 



DIRECTORY OF INTEGRATED SOFTWARE PACKAGES 



l-tAIUKU 


PRODUCT: Aladin 


Aura 


Corporate MBA 


Electric Desk 




Spreadsheet 
Word processing 
Database 
Grophics 
Communications 
Spelling check 


Y 
Interface only 
Y 
Y 
N 
N 


Y 
Y 
Y 
Y 
N 
N 


Y 

Y 
Y 
Y 
Y 
N 


Y 
Y 
Y 
N 
Y 
N 




Price 

Minimum memory 
Disk Tutorial 
Easy to learn' 
Spreadsheet features 
Matrix format 


SS95 
128K 
Y 
No 

Cole/database 


$495 
256K 
Y 

295x63xN 


S895 
384K 
Y 
Good 

999x95 


S345 
256K(128KPC|r) 

Example, 
Very easy 

255x255 




Recalc 2500 cells 

Windows 

Variable width columns 

Data alignment 

Log functions 

Trig functions 


Could not run 
N 

(The Cole 

function 
wos too 


1:55 

2 

Y(l-35) 

LRC 

3 

7 


3:08 

4 

Y (3-99) 

LRC 

2 

6 


0048 
2 

LRC 






Statistics functions 
Date functions 
Financial functions 
IF THEN 

Replicate ond copy 
Sort rows and columns 


poorly 

documented 

to onswer 


7 
5 
5 
Y 
Y 
Y 


3 

3 
Y 
Y 
Rows 


5 

N 
5 

Y 

Y (Very easy) 

N 




Search ond replace 
Iteration 
Macros 
Table lookup 




Y 

Y 

Advanced 

Y 


N 
N 

Advanced 
Y 


N 
Y 
N 
N 




Word Processing Functions 


"Bridge" only 










Query replace 
Ignore case in search 
Headers ond Footers 
Merge files 
Customize printer 
Form letters 




Y 
N 
Y 
Y 
Limited 
Y 


N 
N 

N 
Y 
Y 
Y 


N 
N 
Y 
Y 
Y (easy) 
Y 


lypeover ana insen 
OK for fast typists? 




Y 
Y 


Y 
Y 


Y 
Very good 


Database Functions 

Files too large for memory 
Spreadsheet format 


Y 
N 


Y 
In spreadsheet 


N 
Y 


Y 
N 




Kecoras per tile 
Fields per record 
Maximum field 
Number of sort keys 
Calculated fields 
Command language 

r 


65.535 

512 

4K per record 

1 

Y 
N 


(Disk size) 

256 

255 

9 

Y 

N 


999 

95 

254 

6 

. Y 
Macros 


65,000 

50 

1,000 

1 

N 

For search only 

Y 

Minimal 

B-Tree 




Screen generator 
Report generator 
Index type 


Y 

Y 

B-StarPlus Tree 


Y 

Y 

B-Tree 


Y 

N 

None 




Graphics Functions 

Move labels 


N 


Limited 


N 


None 




Bar charts 

Pie charts 

3D Bar charts 

Line chart 

Customize printer graphics? 

Use plotter? 


Y 
N 
N 
N 
N 
N 


Y 
Y 
Y 
Y 
(IBM/Epson) 
HP 7475 


Y 
Y 
N 
Y 
Y 

Y 




S-10 SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREAD 


)SHEET SECTION 




( 


XTOBER 1984 





































Encore! IBM Assistant 


InteSaft 


ITSoftware 


Ja<k2 Jane 


KnowlcdgeMan 








(due 1985) 


InteCalc 


Calclt 


Y 


Y 


Y 






Limited 


Writing Asst. 


InteWord 


Writlt 


Y 


Y 


N 




Special purpose 


Filing/Report 


InteBase 


Keeplt 


Y 


Y 


Y 




Y 


Graphing Asst. 


InteGraph 


Showlt 


Y 


N 


KGraph/K Paint 




N 


N 


N 


Linklt, Passlt 


N 


N 


N 




N 


Y 


N 


in Writlt 


N 


N 


N 




$695 


$150 each 


$295 each 


$100-$500eoch 


$495 


$179 


$500 






256K 


128K 


128K 


256K 


256K 


48K 


192K 








Samplers 


N 


Y 


Y 


Animated help 








Good 


N 
Planning Asst. 


Foir to good 
InteCalc 


Very good 
Calclt 


Good 

database) 


Very easy 


Not tested 






32,000 cells 




255x255x255 


255x255x255 


255x255 


5x14 


255x255 




0021/2,000 cells 


(To be released 


00:08 


0008 


00:10/1,000 cells 


(only 70 cells) 


Not tested 






1 


next year) 


4 


4 


2 


4 


N 




Y 




Y (1-127) 


Y 


Y 


N 


Y 




None 




LR 


LROforCVer 


LR 


LRC 


? 




4 




2 


3 


1 


N 


3 










6 


8 


N 


N 


Y 






7 


10 


2 


5 


7 






2 




4 


2 


N 


N 


N 






8 




11 


11 


2 


N 


N 






Y 




Y 


In Exec only 


Y 


N 


If Then Else 






Y 




Replicate only 


Y 


N 


Cut and paste 


Y 






Y 




N 


N 


N 


N 


Use database 




N 




N 


N 


Forms only 


N 


Y 






Y 




Y 


Y 


N 


N 


N 




Advanced 




Exec functions 


Exec 


N 


N 


Y 




Y 




3 functions 


Y (4 functions) 


Y 


N 


Y 




(UCSD editor) 
Y 


Writing Assist 


InteWord 


(Multimote) 






None 






Y 




Y 


Y 








Y 


N 


Y 




Y 


Y 








Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Title only 








Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 




Y 








Parallel/serial 


Y 


Y 


Y (60 options) 


Y 


6 printers 








N 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Manually 






Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 






N (line editor) 


Y 


Fair 


Y 


Y 


Probably not 






(Specialized) 


Filing Assist. 


InteBase 


Keeplt 










N 


Y 




Y 


Y 


Not stated 


Y 




Y 


N 




N 


Possible 


N 
Not stated 


Optional 


1 


29.500 




Disk 


2,200 


65,535 






1,024 


31 pages of 100 




99 


1.024 


10 


255 






255 


Not specified 


(InteB. 


70 


255 


25 


65,535 






1 


1 


not yet 


9 


3 


1 


More than 10 






Y 


Max 3 in report 


available) 


Y 


Y 


N 








Advonced 


N 




Y 


N 


N 


Y 




N 


Y 




Y 


Y 


N 


Y 






Y 


Reporting Asst. 




Y 


N 


N 


Y 




None 


None 




3 unspecified 


None 


None 


B-Plus Tree 






Graphing Asst. 


(In InteCalc) 


Showlt 




None 






Y 


N 


Y 


N 


Y 




Y 




Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 




Y 






Y 


Y 


N 


Y 


N 




Y 






N 


N 


N 


N 


N 




Y 






Y 


Y 


N 


Y 


Y 




Y 






Epson only 


9 choices 


N 


N (Epson/IBM) 


N 




Y 






HP only 


5 choices 


N 


HP IBM, ColComp 


N 




J 




CREATIVE COMPUTING 




SPE( 


HAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEE 


T SECTION S-ll 





DIRECTORY (CONT'D) 



FEATURES 

Spreadsheet 
Word processing 
Database 
Graphics 
Communications 



Sue 



check 



Minimum memory 
Disk Tutorial 
Easy to learn? 
Spreadsheet features 
Matrix formal 
Recolc 2500 cells 
Windows 

Variable width columns 
Data alignment 
Log functions 
Trig functions 
Statistics functions 
Date functions 

al functions 
IF THEN 

Replicate and copy 
Sort rows and columns 
Search and replace 
Iteration 
Macros 
Table lookup 

Word Processing Functions 

Query reploce 
Ignore cose in search 
Headers ond Footers 
Merge files 
Customize printer 
Form letters 
Typeover and Insert 
OK for fast typists? 

Database Functions 

Files too large for memory 
Spreadsheet format 
Records per file 
Fields per reco 
Moximum field 
Number of sort keys 

cited fields 
Command language 
Screen generator 
Report generator 
Index type 

Graphics Functions 

Move labels 
Bar charts 
arts 
3D Bor charts 
Line chart 

Customize printer graphics? 
Use plotter? 



PRODUCT: Off ix 


1-2-3 


PcachText 5000 


PraitiCalcll 


N 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


N 


Y 


Limited 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


N 


Y 


Y 


Y 


N 


N 


Y 


N 


N 


N 
S495 


Y 


N 


$149 


$39 


$69 95 


192K 


192K 


I28K 


48K 


N 




npledata) 


N 


Fair 


Good 


Fair to good 


Y 


None 










256x2048 


63x254 


-100 
00 1 1/T/00cbI|s 




00:15 


106 




2 


2 


N 




Y(l-72) 


Y(l-99) 


Y (1-38) 




LRC 


LR 


LR 




3 


3 


2 




7 


7 


4 




7 









5 









5 









Y 








Y 


Copy 1 1 only 






Rows 


N 






Search 


N 


Scorch 




Y 


N 


N 




Y 


N 


N 




Y 


Y 


N 




None 




Very minimal 


N 




N 




N 




N 




N 






N 


Y 






N 


N 








Y 








Y 




Y 


Replace 


N 




Y 
List Manager 


N 


Y 


N 


Y 


N 


N 


Y 


N 


Y 


1 million char. 


Unspecified 


32,765 




250 


32-256 






250 


240 














Y 






Y 


N 


Keyboard mt 




U 


Y 


N 


N 




Y 


N 


Y 


N 




None 


None 


None 


None 




' None 






N 




■ 




Y 






Y 




N 




N 




N 




Y 




N 




Epson/Prism 




N 




HP 7470A 


o 


N 
CTOBER 1984 


SHEET SECTION 





























Series One Plus 


Symphony 


T/Maker 


III EZ Pic 
[Apple 


Window Master 






Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


N 


Magic Worksheet 






Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Word Right 




Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


NAD & Analyst 




ExecuPlot 


Y 


Bar charts 


Graph'n'Calc 


N 


Y 




Execulink 


Y 


N 


Promised 


ECOM only 


N 




N 


N 


Y 


N 


Y 


N 




S495 (WP DB SS) 


$695 


S450 




S250 


$495 (complete) 




192K 


320K 


128K 


128K 


96K 


256* 




Y 


Y 


Y (demo disk) 


Y 


N 


N 




Acceptable 


Good 


Difficult 


Y 


Easy 


Very difficult 




ExecuModel 








None 


Magic Worksheet 




256x64 


256x8191 


50 x (memory) 


127x999 




64x255 




00 55/1,450 cells 


0005/2,125 cells 


Could not run 


00:40 




3:45 




2 


4 


N 


2 




2(HorV) 




Y(l-72) 


Y (1-240) 


Y (free form) 


Y (2-75) 




Y (3-77) 




LR 


LRC 


LRC 


LRC 




LRC 




3 


3 


3 







3 




Pi only 


7 


4 







7 




5 


7 


4 


2 




2 







11 


Simulated 












NPV only 


5 


NPV 


2 




NPV 




Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 




N 




Y 


Y 


N 


Y 




Y 




N 


Y 


Y 


N 




N 




N 


Find 


Y 


Search 




N 




N 


Y 


N 


N 




N 




N 


Y 


N 


N 




Scripts 




N 


Y 


Simulated 


Y 




Y 
Word Right 




Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 




Y 


Y 


N 


Y 


N 


Y 




Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Footers 


Y 




Y 


Y 


Y 


NM 


Y 


Y 




Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Some 


Y 




Y 


Y 


Y 


N 


Y 


Y (with NAD) 




Line insert 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Y 




Fair 


Y 


N (Line editor) 


Y 


Fair 


Could not test 
Analyst 




Y 


N 


Y 


N 


Y 


Y 




N 


Y 


Optional 


Y 


N 


N 




Unspecified 


8,191 


About 800 


(Memory size) 


(Disk size) 


Disk size 




35 


256 


About 20-100 


30 


250 


50 




78 


239 


80 


79 


76 


132 (totol.255) 




5 


3 


1 


1 


9 


1 




In reports only 


Y (sheet mode) 


Y 


Y 


N 


Y 




N 


Y 


N 


N 


N 


Script 




Y 


Y 


Uses editor 


N 


N 


N 




ExecuReporter 


Y 


Y 


Y 


Form Letters 


Y 




Index file 


None 


Not specified 


None 


None 


Mot mentioned 




ExecuPlot 






None 


None 






N 


Y 


N 






N 




Y 


Y 


Y 






Y 




Y 


Y 


N 






Y 




N 


N 


N 






N 




Y 


Y 


N 






Y 




Epson only 


Y 


N 






Not described 




N 


Y 


N 






HP7470A only 




CREATIVE COMPU 


riNG 




SPECIAL INTEGR 


ATED SPREADSHEET SECTION S-13 



Previews of Coming Attractions (cont'd) 



(continued from page S-Vj 
built applications for dBase II Like Sym- 
phony, Framework will cost $695. Frame- 
work includes an outline generator that 
integrates a spreadsheet, forms process- 
ing, data management, communica- 
tions, a word processor, and graphics. 

Open Access/Open Access is built 
around a relational database manager 
using IBM's Structured Query Lan- 
guage. It has five other modules: spread- 
sheet, graphics, word processing, com- 
munications, and time management. 
The DBMS offers up to 32,000 records 
with 55 fields and can have five files open 
at once. It is available for the IBM PC and 
the Tandy 2000. and requires 192K of 
memory and two disk drives. 

Plan Series/Chang Labs announced 
Memol'lan (word processor), MicroFlan 
(spreadsheet), FilePlan (data manage- 
ment). D<xuPlan (report generator), and 
GraphPlan (Graphics) for the IBM PC. 
MS-DOS systems, and CP/M systems. 
These stand-alone packages work in as 
little as 64K. of memory and also work 
together in an integrated fashion with 
l.inkPlan. an integrating environment. 
The modules cost $195 to $495 each. 

\n\v\yintuit, from Noumenon, is a $395 
package that combines text editing, di- 
rectory management, database manage- 
ment and spreadsheet. This package is 
limited in capacity: the database allows 
up to 65 fields with two sort keys, and the 
spreadsheet has 200 rows of 65 columns. 
The "word processing" requires separate 
parts to enter and format text. Intuit re- 
quires 256K of memory 

Benchmark/ At Comdex, Metasoft 
Corp. announced their Benchmark 
scries, ten integrated packages ranging in 
price from $49 to $395, with package 
deals available from $395 to $995. The 
packages include The Administrator (in- 
tcgratingdirectory program). Word Proc- 
essor, Spelling Checker, Telecom, Busi- 
ness Graphics, Presentation Graphics, 
Financial Planner, Data. 

Ovation/Ovo/ion. the most prcan- 
nounced and overhyped software pack- 
age since VisiOn, was originally due this 
past spring but has been rescheduled for 



October release. The package claims to 
work entirely in English with fewer than 
30 commands to handle spreadsheets, 
word processing, graphics, information 
management, and communications. 



tronic mail, directory management, and 
3270 communications. Its main attrac- 
tion is the degree of mainframe to work- 
station integration, particularly when 
used with IDMS. The programs require a 



SOMETIMES, YOU must read between the lines to 
discover a flaw in a package. 



Changes made to one aspect of a pro- 
gram are to be immediately reflected in 
all other programs, making the product 
more closely integrated than its competi- 
tors. 

lnt*qfate4-7/Inte,i;raieiI-7 is clearly po- 
sitioned against Symphony, with two 
extra appl ications for the same price. The 
extra applications arc mainframe elec- 
tronic mail and DEC VT52/VT100 or 
IBM 3101 terminal emulation. The word 
processor includes a spelling checker 
with a 35,000-word dictionary. Com- 
pared to Symphony, the package allows 
only 1/4 as many rows in the spreadsheet 
but more than 20 times as many records 
in the database manager, allowing 
100,000 records, with 40 fields per record 
and up to 60 characters per field. Inte- 
grated-? requires 320K. of memory and 
two drives or a hard drive. The package 
will sell for $495 until the end of October, 
then it will be $695. 

Knowledge Man/Although we were 
not able to review Knowledge Man. we 
did have a copy of the tutorial manual, 
and have listed it in the charts, without 
the benchmarks. 



HEAVY DUTY SUPPLIERS 



Goldengate/ Cullinet Software pre- 
viewed Goldennate at the June PC Expo, 
and scheduled it for fall release. This 
package is probably a bigger threat to 
Symphony than Framework. Cullinet 
was the first public software company on 
a major stock exchange and has been pro- 
ducing mainframe database software 
since 1968. Their IDMS is probably the 
most widely used database in large com- 
panies, and Goldengate was designed to 
tie into the database. The Goldengate 
programs include a spreadsheet, a local 
database management system, color 
business graphics, word processing, elec- 



PC with 256K and at least a 5Mb hard 
disk. Prices were not available, but indi- 
cations were that they will start in the 
$IOOOs. 

20/20/ Another mainframe software 
supplier producing an integrated pack- 
age for micros is Access technology. If you 
are running their SuperComp-Twenty 
spreadsheet on your IBM mainframe 
($9700) or on your Prime. VAX, or Data 
General ($4800), then you are sure to 
want 20/20 on your micro to do text 
processing, spreadsheet modeling, 
graphics, data management, and sched- 
uling. 

CA-lxa<uli»e/C.I-/;vc( utive has been 
advertised in business magazines with 
four-page color ads as available now. 
Computer Associates is a large software 
firm with products for mainframes and 
minicomputers. The package includes 
CA-Link for mainframe to micro data 
transfer. CA-Writer for word processing. 
CA-Graph color business graphics. CA- 
Tutor training for the system. CA-Calc 
spreadsheet. CA-DBMS and CA-Form 
for the database manager, and the CA- 
Executive window manager to integrate 
them all. The advertising lists a price of 
$6500 for five workstations and the main- 
frame communications link. The system 
will work in the IBM PC. PC XT. 3270 
PC. and XT/370. It links to CA-Universe. 
their mainframe database manager. 



OFF THE BEATEN PATH 



DeskMate/ KasTcr Corp. has an- 
nounced a package at the other end of the 
spectrum from Ct-Fxecuiivc. Their inte- 
grated MiniCalc, GraphMate, FileMate 
and NoteBook provide a spreadsheet, 
graphics, and a database manager for the 
Casio PB-700 hand held computer. The 
spreadsheet has 200 cells, and the data- 
base can handle 70 records. 



S-14 SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEET SECTION 



CCTOBER 1984 















MultiSolvei/A/f////'.%>A'<'r is a light duty 


graphs, budget management (28 budget 


Basic, you can then customize the pro- 






Basic language program generator aimed 


categories), mailing lists (2200 names) 


grams further. A master menu with 






at the home and small business. This 


and form letters, word processing, gen- 


screen prompts integrates the packages. 






$295 program lets you specify your own 


eral ledger, checkbook manager, and in- 


It requires 128K of memory and two dou- 






database management (20 fields), bar 


voicing programs. If you program in Me sided disk drives. ■ 




Manufac 


tun 


»r Lictina 








Integrated Software Products and Suppliers 






PRODUCT, 


PRODUCT, 


PRODUa, 






COMPUTER(S). 


COMPUTER(S) 


COMPUTER(S) 


. 




OPERATING 


OPERATING 


OPERATING 






SYSTEMS COMPANY 


SYSTEMS 


COMPANY SYSTEMS 


COMPANY 




Aladin Advanced Data Institute 


Corporate 


Context Management 


Encore! 


Ferox Microsystems, 




(MS-DOS) 1215 Howe Ave. 


MBA 


Systems 


(IBM 


Inc. 




Sacramento, CA 95825 


(MS-DOS) 


23868 Hawthorne Blvd. 


UCSD) 


1701 N.FortMyerDr. 




(916)925-2229 




Torrance. CA 90505 
(213) 378-8277 




Arlington, VA 22209 
(703)841-0800 




Appleworks Apple Computer 












(Apple II) 10260 Bandley Dr. 


Creative 


Creative Software 


Framework 


AshtonTate 




Cupertino, CA 95014 


Series 


230 E. Caribbean Dr. 


(MS-DOS) 


10150 West Jefferson 




(408)996-1010 


(IBM, Com- 


Sunnyvale, CA 94089 




Blvd. 






modore, 


(408) 745-1655 




Culver City, CA 90230 




Aura Softrend 


Apple) 






(213)204-5570 




(PC-DOS) 87 Indianrock Rd. 












Windham, NH 03087 


Desq 


Quarterdeck Office 


Get 


Electronic Arts 




(603)898-1777 


(MS-DOS) 


Systems 


Organized 


2755 Campus Dr. 








1918 Main St. 


(MS-DOS) 


San Mateo, CA 94403 




Benchmark Metasoft Corp. 




Santa Monica, CA 90405 




(415) 571-7171 




(MS-DOS) 6509 West Frye Rd., 




(213) 392-9851 








Suite 12 






Goldengate 


Cullinet Software, Inc. 




Chandler, AZ 85224 


DeskMate 


KasTer Corporation 


(MS-DOS) 


400 Blue Hill Dr. 




(602)961-0003 


(Casio 


RO Box 117 




Westwood, MA 02090 






PB-700) 


Alpine, NJ 07620 




(617) 329-7700 




CA-Executrve Computer Associates 




C01) 784-9430 








(MS-DOS) International 






IBM 


IBM Corp. 




125 Jericho Tpke. 


Electric 


Alpha Software 


Assistant 


RQ Box 1328-S 




Jericho, NY 11753 


Desk 


Corporation 


series 


Boca Raton, FL 33432 




(800)653-3003 


(MS-DOS) 


30BSt. 

Burlington, MA 01803 


(MS-DOS) 


(800)447-4700 




Canobrain Canon USA 




(617)229-2924 


InteCalc 


Schuchardt Software 




(CP/M86) One Canon PI. 






(MS-DOS) 


Systems Inc. 




Lake Success, NY 11042 


Enable 


The Software Group 




515 Northgate Dr. 




(516)488-6700 


(MS-DOS) 


Northway Ten Industrial 

Park 
Ballston Lake, NY 12019 
(518)877-8600 




San Rafael, CA 94903 
(415) 492-9330 




CREATIVE COMPUTING 




SPECIAL INTEGRATED SPREADSHEET SECTION S-15 



















Manufacturer lis 


ting(« 


Mit'd) 








PRODUCT, 




PRODUCT, 




PRODUCT, 






COMPUTER(S). 


COMPUTER(S). 


COMPUTER(S). 




OPERATING 




OPERATING 




OPERATING 






SYSTEMS 


COMPANY 


SYSTEMS 


COMPANY 


SYSTEMS 


COMPANY 




lntegrated-7 


Mosaic Software 


Peachtext 


Peachtree Software 


SuperCalc3 


Sorcim Corp. 




(PC-DOS) 


1972 Massachusetts Ave. 


5000 


3445 Peachtree Rd., NE 


(MS-DOS) 


2310 Lundy Ave. 






Cambridge, MA 02140 


(MS-DOS) 


Atlanta, GA 30326 




San Jose, CA 95131 






(617)491-2434 




(404)239-3165 




f408) 942-1727 




Intuit 


Noumenon 


PFS Series 


Software Publishing 


Symphony 


Lotus Development 




(PC-DOS) 


512 Westline Dr. 


(MS-DOS) 


Corp. 


and 1-2-3 


Corp. 






Alameda, CA 94501 




1901 Landings Dr. 


(MS-DOS) 


161 First St. 






(415) 521-2145 




Mountain View, CA 
94043 




Cambridge, MA 02142 
(617)492-7171 




ITSoftware 


ITSoftware 




(415)962-8910 








(MS-DOS) 


RQ Box 2392 






T/Makerlll 


1/ Maker Co. 






Princeton, NJ 08540 


Plan series 


Chang Labs 


(CP/M. 


2115 Landing Dr. 






(800)222-0592 


(MS-DOS, 
CR/M) 


5300 Stevens Creek Blvd. 
San Jose, CA 95129 


MS-DOS) 


Mountain View, CA 
94043 




Jack2 


Business Solutions, Inc. 




(408)246-8020 




(415)962-0195 




(IBM 


60 East Main St. 












UCSD) 


Kings Park, NY 11754 


Practi-series 


Practicorp 


Target 


Comshare, Inc. 






(516)269-1120 


(MS-DOS) 


International, Inc. 

The Silk Mill 


Financial 
Modeling 


1935 CliffValley Way, 
Suite 200 




Jane 


AnVtronics Corp. 




44 Oak St. 


(CP/M, 


Atlanta, GA 30329 




(Apple II) 


PO. Box 4190 

Ann Arbor, Ml 48106 




Newton Upper Falls, 
MA 02164 


MS-DOS) 


(404)634-9535 






(313) 769-7253 




(617)965-9870 


III E-Z 
Pieces 


Haba Systems, Inc. 

15154 Stagg St. 




Knowledge 


Micro Data Base 


Press'n'Plot 


American Programmers 


(Apple III) 


Van Nuys, CA 91405 M 




Manager 


Systems 


(MS-DOS) 


Guild 




(213) 901-8828 




(MS-DOS) 


Box 248 




55 Mill Plain 17-5 










Lafayette. IN 47902 




Danbury,CT 06811 


20/20 


Access Technology, Inc. 






(317)463-2581 




003)794-0396 


(MS-DOS) 


6 Pleasant St. W 
South Natick. MA 0(760 




MultiSotver 


Software Technology for 


The Profit 


Prentice-Hall, Inc. 




(617)655-9191 




(MS-DOS) 


Computers 


Center 


Dept.GPD 










153 California St. 


(PC-DOS) 


EnglewoodCliffs,NJ 


The 


Computer Creations 






Newton, MA 02158 




07632 


Ultimate 


766 El Camino Real #D 






(617)244-2590 




(201) 592-2704 


(MS-DOS) 


San Carlos, CA 94070 /I 
(415) 595-4466 




Offix 


Emerging Technology 


Series One 


Executec Corp. 




vfl 




(MS-DOS) 


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PROGRAMMING 



Structured Programming 

In Basic 



Part 5: Control Structures in ANSI Basic 



Arthur Luehrmann 



The first three articles in this series [May, June, July, 1984] 
introduced the main ideas of structured programming: (1) the 
top-down method of planning a program and (2) the use of three 
types of formal control blocks to handle all problems of pro- 
gram logic. These ideas were introduced using the version of 
Basic available on most personal computers. The fourth article 
showed how the new ANSI Basic language encourages top- 
down planning and modular programming. This final article 
describes the formal control structures which come ready-made 
in ANSI Basic. 

ANSI Basic, Macintosh Basic, 
True Basic, et al. 

As stated in the previous article in this series, microcomputer 
Basics have been left in the lurch by the past 15 years of ad- 
vances in the design of programming languages. Since about 
1970, nearly all new languages have been based on the concepts 
of structured programming. Although Pascal is best known, 
this is also true of C, PL/I, Modula-2, and Ada. But the Basics 
one finds on nearly all personal computers are relics of a 20- 
year-old language, the original Dartmouth Basic of 1964. (This 
historic language is now standardized and has the name Mini- 
mal Basic.) 

Although microcomputer Basics have remained unchanged, 
Basic has not. Nearly 1 5 years ago, Dartmouth Basic added in- 
dependent subprograms with local variables and a parameter- 
passing mechanism. About eight years ago, Dartmouth Basic 
added a full set of control structures, which eliminated the need 
for using jump statements with line number references — the 
bane of good programming practice. Unfortunately, all these 
good developments at Dartmouth went unnoticed by the first 
developers of microcomputer Basics. 

For the past half-dozen years, Committee X3J2 of the 
American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has been at 
work developing a draft standard for a modern Basic that in- 
cludes the above structured programming elements, elaborate 
file I/O, and device-independent graphics. At this writing, the 
draft is available for public comment. It things go as expected, 
a new ANSI standard for Basic will probably become a reality 
in a year or two. 

In the meantime, new commercial products based on the 
ANSI Basic draft and intended for personal computers should 

October 1 984 » Creative Computing 



be available by the time this article appears in print. Apple 
Computer expects its new Macintosh Basic to be in dealers' 
hands in September. At about the same time, True Basic, Inc., 
founded by the creators of Basic, John Kemeny and Thomas 
Kurtz, and a small team of Dartmouth programmers, will de- 
liver an IBM PC version of its product, called True Basic, to 
Addison Wesley Publishing Company for distribution this fall. 
A Macintosh version of True Basic will follow shortly 
thereafter. 

The previous article in this series described the elements of 
ANSI Basic that make top-down design and modular program- 
ming attractive and easy to do. The present article discusses the 
built-in loop and branch control structures that are available to 
ANSI Basic programmers. 

ANSI Basic Loop Blocks 

The June and July articles in this series showed how to build 
loop and branch control structures out of rem, if, and goto 
statements. A programming example in the July article was a 
guessing game in which the computer has a secret word and 
asks the player to guess again and again, receiving hints each 
time as to whether the secret word is earlier or later in the 'dic- 
tionary than the guess, and stopping when the guess is correct. 

The part of the program that asks again and again for 
guesses is a loop block, of course. In the Minimal Basic version 
of the guessing game program, the loop looks like this: 



410' 


LOOP 


420 


PRINT "WHAT'S YOUR GUESS- 


430 


INPUT G$ 


440 


IF G$ = S$ THEN 500 


450 


GOSUB 800' HINT 


490 


GOTO 4 10 


500 


END LOOP 



In Minimal Basic, the line number references in the IF and 
goto statements are necessary to exit the loop and to continue 
the loop. ANSI Basic, on the other hand, has a multi-line loop 
block already built into the language. Here is how one would 
write this same loop in ANSI Basic: 

Do 

Print "What's your guess"; 

Input guessS 
If guessS ■ secrets then exit do 

Call Hint 
Loop 

131 



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PROGRAMMING 



The keywords Do and Loop mark the beginning and end of 
the block. The computer processes a loop block by performing 
the body statements in top to bottom order. Note that the If 
statement ends with the phrase "exit do." If the condition in 
the If statement is true, the computer skips to the next state- 
ment after the Do/Loop block, thus exiting the loop. If the 
condition is false, the computer continues to perform state- 
ments until it reaches the Loop statement. Then the computer 
jumps back to the beginning of the loop automatically. The 
process continues until the exit condition becomes true. 

A small change in this program will bring out another point 
about the Do/Loop block. Suppose you wanted the program to 
begin with the prompt "What's your first guess?" and after that 
switch to "Next guess?" for the rest of the prompts. Here is one 
way to do that: 

Input "What's your first guess?"; guessS 

Do 

If guessS = secrets then exit do 

Cal I Hint 

Input "Next guess?"; guessS 
Loop 

The Input statement in ANSI Basic allows a user-defined 
prompt string to substitute for the built-in question mark 
prompt. The first Input statement is outside the loop; so the 
first action inside the loop is to see whether or not the guess 
was correct. Whenever the exit test occurs at the beginning of a 
loop, ANSI Basic allows this abbreviation: 

Input "What's your first guess?"; guessS 
Do until guessS = secrets 

Call Hint 

Input "Next guess?"; guessS 
Loop 

Or else this: 

Input "What's your first guess?"; guessS 
Do while guessS <> secrets 

Cal I Hint 

Input "Next guess?", guessS 
Loop 

Note that all three versions of this new loop have exactly the 
same meaning. In every case, the exit test is performed before 
any body statements are performed. The phrases "until ..." 
and "while ..." may also be appended to the Loop statement 
when the exit test is to be performed after all the body state- 
ments are performed at least once. (Pascal programmers will 
recognize that these two abbreviations give the Basic pro- 
grammer the equivalent of the While and the Repeat 
statements.) 

Whether to use these abbreviations is a matter of taste. I pre- 
fer to write the exit test explicitly as an If statement, since it 
seems clearer to me that the test is to be performed at that 
particular point in the loop. Words like while and until are 
vague about the time that the test is to happen. Furthermore, 
during program development it often happens that the exit test 
migrates around inside the loop. Sometimes it is at the top, 
sometimes in the middle, sometimes at the bottom. Making 
such changes is easier if the exit test is on a line by itself and not 
combined with the Do or Loop lines. 

A final point about the Do/Loop block: It is perfectly legal 
in ANSI Basic for a loop to have more than one exit test. One 
can have, for example, a while . . . phrase on the Do line, and 
until . . . phrase on the Loop line, and three If lines with "exit 

October 1 984 * Creative Computing 



do" phrases. In fact, "exit do" is a statement in its own right 
and can go anywhere inside a loop. Although legal, these are 
horrible practices and should be avoided. Loops with multiple 
or complex exits are unreadable. (I tried to convince my X3J2 
colleagues of this, but it was too late in the day.) 

ANSI Basic Branch Blocks 

The two most important multi-line control blocks in any 
programming language are loop blocks and branch blocks. 
They are the backbone of structured programming. The HINT 
subroutine in the Minimal Basic version of the guessing game 
program contains a branch block built from rem, if, and goto 
statements. Here is how it looks: 



810IF 


S$ < GS 


THEN 85 


820 


•FALSE 




830 


PRINT 


"LATER T 


840 


GOTO 870 


850 


•TRUE 




860 


PRINT 


"EARL I ER 


870 'END IF 





THAN' 



G$ 



THAN' 



GS 



The line number references in the if and goto statements 
are necessary, first to cause the branch to occur and second to 
skip over the true branch if the condition was false. ANSI Basic 
offers a ready-made branch block that needs no line number 
references. Here is the same branch in ANSI Basic: 

If secrets < guessS then 

Print "Earlier than";guess$ 
Else 

Print "Later than";guess$ 
End i f 

The main difference here is in the order of the cases: The true 
case comes first and the false case is second. However, the 
meaning of both versions is the same. The computer is to test 
whether the secret word is less than the guess and then either 
print one hint or the other one. 

In ANSI Basic, a branch block begins with an If statement 
that ends with the word then. The block ends with an End if 
statement. The Else statement is optional. The computer begins 
processing the block by evaluating the condition in the If state- 
ment. If it is true, the computer performs the statement or 
statements between the If statement and the Else statement. If 
the condition is false, the computer performs the statements be- 
tween the Else and the End-if statements. (If there is no Else 
statement and the condition is false, the computer simply skips 
to the next statement after the entire block.) 

Multiway Branches 

The famous Boehm and Jacopini theorem of 1966 assures us 
that all problems in program logic can be handled by means of 
only two control structures: a loop block and a branch block. If 
ANSI Basic offered only the Do/Loop and the If/End-if 
blocks, therefore, it would give us all the tools necessary for 
avoiding the wild jumps that make programs hard to read. 

In fact, ANSI Basic goes a step further. It gives additional 
control structures that add greatly to the readability of pro- 
grams. Essentially, these are not new blocks. Rather, they are 
just abbreviations for certain commonly occurring situations in 
which one branch block is nested inside another one. 

Suppose, for example, that a program has just received a one- 
character string input from a user. The program must detect 
and do different things, depending upon whether the character 
is a lowercase letter, an uppercase letter, a numeric digit, a plus 
or minus sign, or anything else. Here is how one might use the 
two-way branch block to construct the needed five-way branch: 

133 



PROGRAMMING 



Input aS 

If "a" <= a$ and aS <= "z" then 

Ca I I Lowercase 
Else 

If »A" <= aS and aS <= "Z" then 

Ca I I Uppercase 
Else 

If "0" <= a$ and aS <= "9" then 

Ca I I Digit 
Else 

If aS ="+" or aS = "-" then 

Ca I I Si gn 
Else 

Cal I OtherChar 
End i f 
End i f 
End' i f 
End i f 

This structure does the job by nesting block inside of block 
inside of block, and so on. The outermost block is a single two- 
way branch. However, another completed two-way branch is 
nested inside the Else part of the outer branch. Furthermore, 
the Else part of this inner branch contains yet another complete 
branch block. Finally, four levels deep, there is still another 
branch block. 

Such a structure works, but it is very hard to make sense of. 
The four End-if lines are especially troublesome. Do we have 
the right number? Does each one match up with a correspond- 
ing If line? It takes close inspection to answer these questions. 
To make nested Ifs more legible, ANSI Basic allows the follow- 
ing abbreviation of the above five-way branch: 

I npu t a$ 

If "a" <= aS and aS <= "z" then 

Ca I I Lower case 
Else If "A" <= aS and aS <= "z" then 

Ca I I Uppercase 
Else If "0" <= a$ and aS <= "9" then 

Ca I I Digit 
Else If a$ = "+" or aS = "-" then 

Ca I I Si gn 
Else 

Ca I I OtherChar 
End i f 

Each Else line in the first version is combined with the If line 
that follows the Else. Furthermore, a single End-if line closes 
the entire block. The result is both shorter and far easier to 
read. However, it has exactly the same meaning as the longer 



version: the conditions in each If line are tested in order until 
one is found to be true. If none is true, the last Else part is 
performed. 

ANSI Basic offers still another way to write a multiway 
branch block like this one. Here it is: 

Input aS 
Select case aS 
Case "a" to "z" 

Ca I I Lower case 
Case "A" to "Z" 

Ca I I Uppercase 
Case "0" to "9" 

Ca I I Digit 
Case "+" , "-" 

Cal I Sign 
Case Else 

Cal I OtherChar 
End Select 

Again, this version has exactly the same meaning as the two 
previous ones. The computer performs a Select block by first 
evaluating the expression after the word Case in the Select line. 
Then it searches, from the top, for the first case that matches 
the value of the expression. The first three cases here are 
ranges. That is, if the string value of a$ is greater or equal to 
"a" and less than or equal to "z," the computer will perform 
the first case. Otherwise it will try the second case, and so on. If 
no match is found and if there is a Case-else statement, that 
case is the one performed by the computer. If there is no Case- 
else statement, control passes to the first statement after the Se- 
lect block. 

Note that the fourth case is a list of possible matches. This 
case will be performed if the value of a$ is either " +" or "-." In 
general, items in a Case statement may consist of one or more 
constants or ranges of constants. Constants and ranges may be 
combined in a single Case statement. Commas separate 
constants or ranges from one another. It is also possible to have 
open-ended ranges. For example, the following Select block will 
tell whether a number is positive, negative, or zero. The phrases 
"is > 0" and "is < 0" are examples of open-ended ranges. 

Select case number 
Case i s > 

Print "Pos i t i ve" 
Case is < 

Print "Nega t i ve" 
Case else 

Print "Zero" 
End select 



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PROGRAMMING 



Again, it is worth pointing out that there is nothing that can 
be written in the form of a Select block that cannot also be han- 
dled with nested two-way If blocks. That, however, is an aca- 
demic point. The truth is that any multi-way branch that can 
be put in the form of Select block is vastly more readable that 
way. (Unfortunately, not all multi-way branches can be recast 
as Select blocks.) 

A Final Example 

Perhaps the best way to wrap up this series on structured 
programming in Basic is to look at an example written orig- 
inally in a highly unstructured way in Minimal Basic, and then 
to look at the same program in ANSI Basic. The problem is 



The next step is to translate the English phrases into Basic. 
As usual, the best approach is to substitute calls to procedures 
and then create skeleton procedures for debugging purposes. 
Since the whole program will be fairly short, we choose to use 
internal procedures. Here is the next phase of the program 
development: 

Program DiceGame 
Ca I I Initialize 
For j = 1 to 1000 

Ca I I OneRound 
Next j 
Call Statistics 



Any multi-way branch that can 

be put In the form of a 

Select block is vastly 

more readable that way. 



this: to write a program that simulates a dice game for a thou- 
sand rounds and then reports the number of wins and losses. 

In the standard dice game, the player wins on the first roll if 
it is a 7 or 1 1. The player loses if the first roll is 2, 3, or 12. If 
the first roll is anything else, that becomes the player's point. 
The round continues with more rolls until the player rolls the 
point (a win) or a 7 (a loss). 

Here is how one might write such a program in Minimal Ba- 
sic without any effort to structure the program: 

100 DEF FNR = INT(6RND) + INT(6« RND) + 2 

110 LET W = 

120 LET L = 

130 RANDOMIZE 

140 FOR J = 1 TO 1000 

150 LET F = FNR 

160 IF F = 7 OR F 

170 IF F = 2 OR F 

180 LET P = F 

190 LET N = FNR 

200 IF N = P THEN 230 

210 IF N = 7 THEN 250 



11 THEN 230 

3 OR F = 12 THEN 250 



220 GOTO 190 

230 LET W = W + 1 

240 GOTO 260 

250 LET L = L + 1 

260 NEXT J 

270 PRINT "WINS = " ; W 

280 PRINT "LOSSES = "; L 

290 PRINT "% WINS" =";100 

300 END 



W / (W + L) 



Now let's see how to solve the same programming problem 
by using the principles of structured programming and the ele- 
ments of ANSI Basic. We begin with an outline of the main 
parts of the program: 

Program DiceGame 

initialize var i ab I es 

For j = 1 to 1000 
play one round 

Next j 

print statistics 
End 

October 1 984 p Creative Computing 



Sub I n t i a I i ze 

Print "Initial i ze" 
End sub 

Sub OneRound 

Print "OneRound" 
End Sub 

Sub Stat i s t i cs 

Print "Statistics" 
End sub 
End 

The next step is to flesh out the body of the three sub- 
programs. The first is easy. The program must keep track of 
wins and losses, so there are two variables to be initialized to 
zero. In addition, the random number function needs to be re- 
seeded. Here is subprogram Initialize: 

Sub I n t i a I i ze 

Let wins = 

Let losses = 

Randomi ze 
End sub 

Next comes the subprogram to play a single round in the se- 
ries of dice games. The round begins with a single roll of the 
dice. After that there are three cases: a win on 7 or 1 1, a loss on 
2, 3, or 12, and more rolls on any other point. Here is an out- 
line of subprogram OneRound: 

Sub OneRound 

roll dice; value = firstroll 
Se I ec t case firstroll 
Case 7, 11 

coun t it a wi n 
Case 2 . 3 . 12 

coun t it a loss 
Case else 

roll some mor e 
End se I ec t 
End sub 

The Select block is a convenient one to use here for the three 
cases possible in the dice game. The next step is to convert the 
English phrases into Basic statements. Since the dice roll will 
be needed in two different places, it is a good idea to make it 
into a separate function, which we shall call Roll. 

The next two phrases are easy to handle with single Let 
statements. The phrase "roll some more" will contain numer- 
ous details about subsequent rolls, so it is best to replace the 
phrase by a Call statement to a new subprogram. Here is the 
next phase of development: 

139 













PROGRA 


iniiMir 






Sub OneRound 




Notice that the Do/Loop block keeps on rolling the dice un- 




Let f i rst rol I = Ro I I 


til the roll is equal to the point or to 7. Once the loop block is 




Se lee t case f i rst rol I 


finished, a branch block decides whether to increment the wins 




Case 7, 11 


counter or the losses counter. 




Let wi ns = wins + 1 


The preceding subroutine completes the list of tasks remain- 




Case 2. 3. 12 


ing to be done. The dice game program is now complete. Here 




Let I osses = + 1 


is the whole program as it might be written in ANSI Basic: 




Case else 


Program DiceGame 




Ca 1 1 Ro 1 1 Aga i n 


Ca I I I n i t ial i ze 




End se 1 ec t 


For j = 1 to 1000 




End sub 


Ca I I OneRound 
Next j 




Before getting bogged down in the details of function Roll 


Call Statistics 




and subprogram Roll Again, it is a good idea to finish the orig- 






inal three subprograms. The Statistics subprogram still needs 


Sub I n t i a I i ze 




fleshing out. Since it will contain nothing but Print statements. 


Let wins — 




we might as well skip the outline stage. Here is the finished 


Let losses = 




subprogram: 


Randomi ze 
End sub 




Sub Statistics 


Sub OneRound 




Pr int "Wi ns =" ; wins 


Let firstroll = Ro I I 




Print "Losses =" ; losses 


Se lect case f i rst rol I 




Print "%Wins="; 100* wins /(wins+ losses) 


Case 7. 11 




End sub 


Let wins = wins + 1 
Case 2, 3. 12 




Having finished the three original subprograms, it is time to 


Let losses = losses + 1 




turn attention to function Roll and subprogram RollAgain. The 


Case e 1 se 




function is quite straightforward, given an understanding of the 


Ca 1 1 Rol 1 Aga i n 




way the built-in rnd and int functions work. Here it is: 


End select 
End sub 




Func t i on Ro I I 






Let Roll = i n t ( 6 • rnd) + int(6 • rnd) + 2 


Sub Statistics 




End f unc t i on 


Print "Wins =" ; wins 
Print "Losses =" ; losses 




Subprogram RollAgain is a good deal more complex. First, it 


Print "% Wins =" ; 100 • wins / (wins 




must remember the first roll as the "point" to be made. Next it 


+ I osses ) 




must use a loop block to roll the dice again and again until ei- 


End sub 




ther the point is made or the roll is 7. Finally, it must use a 






branch block to increment either the wins counter or the losses 


Func t i on Ro 1 1 




counter, depending on whether or not the point was made. 


Let Roll = i n t ( 6 • rnd) + int(6«rnd) + 2 




Here is an outline of the subprogram: 


End f unc t i on 




Sub Ro I I Aga i n 


Sub Rol 1 Aga i n 




Save first roll as point 


Let poi nt = first 




Do 


Do 




Ro I I d i ce 


Let next = Ro 1 1 




If roll is point or 7 then exit do 


If next = point or next = 7 then exit do 




Loop 


Loop 




If roll is po i n t then 


1 f next = point then 




Coun t it a wi n 


Let wins = wins + 1 




Else 


Else 




Count it a 1 oss 


Let losses = losses + 1 




End i f 


End i f 




End sub 


End sub 




Each phrase above is easily translated into simple Basic 


End 




statements or calls to procedures already defined. Here is the 


This simple program displays both top-down organization 




final version of RollAgain: 


and the use of formal control structures to handle all logical 




Sub Ro 1 1 Aga i n 

Let po i n t = first 
Do 


problems. Since ANSI Basic has all these program structuring 




tools built in, the programmer's job is a good deal simpler than 
it would be when using Minimal Basic. 




Let next = Ro 1 1 


A Final Thought 




If next = point or next = 7 then exit do 


As ANSI Basic becomes available more widely on personal 




Loop 


computers, increasing numbers of people may discover the 




1 f nex t = po i n t then 


advantages of thinking about programming as an orderly, con- 




Let wins = wins + 1 


structive design process and not just a brute force effort to get 




Else 


the thing to work. Perhaps . . . just perhaps ... it may turn out 




Let losses = losses + 1 


that Basic programmers will no longer deserve the reputation 




End i f 


of being, in Professor Dijkstra's phrase, "mentally mutilated 




End sub 


beyond the hope of regeneration." ■ 


140 


October 1 984 ■ Creative Computing 



- PROGRAMMING 



A Calculus Game 

Following the path of a parabola in a stepwise progression 
can lead to some amazing patterns— 
almost like a hall of mirrors. 



Neil M. Wigley 



What happens if you keep repeating 
something? If you poke your sister in the 
arm enough times, she'll whack you. If 
you make enough obscene telephone 
calls to your neighbor, the police will 
surely get you. What if you apply a func- 
tion y = f(x) (straight out of elementary 



The educational value 

of this game is a 

simple example of 

nonlinearity, a subject 

which is just 

beginning to earn 

some attention in 

the mathematical 

community. 



calculus) to a number x, and get a num- 
ber y; and then you apply f to y and get a 
new number f(f(x)) = f(y) and then you 
do the same thing again and again? 

It is not an easy problem to solve 
mathematically, except in certain special 
cases; for example, if f(x) > x always, 
then our numbers will get bigger and 
bigger. They may go off to infinity or 
they may slow down (converge) some- 
where before. 
October 1 984 c Creative Computing 




Figure 1. 

Here we shall consider an elementary 
example which exhibits some rather ex- 
otic behavior. I first learned of this 
example in Scientific American [1]. 

In Figure 1 we see a parabola and 
the diagonal line y = x. The height 
of the parabola is X, where X is a number 
between and 1; later we shall vary X. 

We start with a value of x, call it x . 
Geometrically, what we do is start on 
the x-axis at x , go up to the parabola, 
go to the right (left) till the diagonal line, 
then go up (down) to the parabola, then 
right (left) to the line, etc. The moving 
point thus describes a rectangular path. 
It is the shape of this path which can be 
so fascinating. 

For small values of X (less than .75) 
the point describes a sequence of (al- 



most) rectangles which get smaller and 
smaller, converging on a point (the point 
where the line crosses the parabola). For 
larger values of X, the behavior of the 
path is chaotic; and for values of X in 
between the behavior is, likewise, in 
between: not chaotic, but not as well or- 
ganized as for small X. 

The educational value of this game is 
a simple example of nonlinearity, a sub- 
ject which is just beginning to earn some 
attention in the mathematical commu- 
nity. Thus observance of the paths de- 
scribed above can give a rudimentary 
view of a simple, yet chaotic, 
nonlinearity. 

Let us now do some algebra, and find 
the equations we want to satisfy, so that 
we can write a program. We need the 

141 



equation of the parabola. We want the 
parabola which opens down, goes 
through the points (0,0) and (1,0) on the 
x-axis, and has maximum height X above 
the point (.5,0) on the x-axis. We shall 
vary X later, but we insist that < X < 
1. It should not be a surprise that the 
equation is 

y = 4Xx(l-x) 
which is obviously a parabola and gives 
y = when x = or 1 . and, when x = 
.5, we see that y = X. This parabola also 
opens down, as desired. 

Notice that when < x < 1, we have 
< y < 1. so that y can't go leaping off 
to infinity. Moreover, f(y) is defined, and 
thus so is f(f(y)). We have thus defined a 
sequence, and maybe it will converge. 
The problem now is to compute what 
happens to an initial value of x, say x , 
which we call the seed, after it has been 
hit with f through x, = f(x ), x 2 = f(x,), 
etc. 

It would be boring and time- 
consuming to calculate these numbers 
and compare them after, say, 100 itera- 
tions. Let's try using the monitor to see 
if it can help us. 

To see if what is happening on screen 
agrees with the algebra, we notice that 
any point on the diagonal line must be of 
the form (x,x), since y = x there. So we 
start with a seed x which we place at 
(x o ,0) on the x-axis. Then we go straight 
up to the parabola and meet it at a point 
with the same abscissa x and with or- 
dinate y where y = f(x ), which we call 
x,. To the right (or left) of this point is 
the point (y,y), which shares the same 
ordinate (height) and lies on the diag- 
onal line. This point will have the same 
x-coordinate as it does y-coordinate, and 
the latter is the same as x, = y = f(xo). 
Therefore this point will have 
coordinates (x,,x,). 

Now we begin our loop. From here we 
go up (down) to the parabola, then over 
to the line, and now repeat. Thus it is 
curve-line-curve-line, etc. As the point 
moves on, it traces rectangular shapes, 
two of whose vertices are on the diag- 
onal line. 

The question now is what happens to 
these two vertices on the line after a mil- 
lion iterations. And the results are 
surprising: it depends a great deal on X! 
If X is small (X < .75) then things are 
boring; if X is greater than .75, things get 
exciting, and when X gets near enough to 
1 things get absolutely chaotic! Around 
X = .8 there are some rather interesting 
patterns: rectangles within rectangles — 
like a hall of mirrors. 

More mathematical details are avail- 
able in the excellent article by 
Hofstadter One new result is the exis- 
tence of certain constants which seem to 
depend on the function (in our case, the 
parabola), but which in fact don't 



PROGRAMMING 




Listing 1. 



FOR I = 7«8 TO 777: READ J: POKE 
I.J: NEXT : HOME : TEXT : GOTO 
1010: REM CCIAM 

2 PRINT " LAMBDA- • L " , SEED-"S", 
LD L - "0L: PRINT "OLD SEED= 
"OS" SP-BAR FOR MENU": RETURN 

3 POKE - 16368,0: POKE - 14384 
,0: RETURN 

4 C«<1> » -F. CHANGE F<X) ":C«<2> - 
"L. CHANGE LAMBDA" :C»< 3) - " 
S. CHANGE SEED":C»<4) = "Q. 
0UIT*:C»<5) - "C. CLEAR SCRE 
EN":C*<6i - "E. ENLARGE SCRE 
EN" : RETURN 

= 279 * ( . x - A) / i B - A) ) : 
YP - 1 39 » (1 - < r - A ) / ( B 

- A) ) : RETURN 

97 DEF FN FCX) = 4 » L 

- X) i RETURN 

98 DEF FN G<X) - 4 • L 

- X) : DEF FN F(X> 
FN G<X> > : RETURN 

99 PI > 3.141592634: DEF FN F 
= L • SIN (X » PI) : RETURN 

100 FOR J * 1 TO ?:L<J> ■ LCJ ♦ 
1 ) ! NEXT INL » NL - 1 : RETURN 



< 1 



< • <1 

FN G< 



1010 
1020 



1030 



1030 
1060 



1070 

1080 
1090 

1100 
1110 
1120 

1130 
1 140 
1130 
1160 
1 1 70 
1180 
1190 
1200 
1210 
1230 
1230 

1260 



DEF FN SX'X) - 279 « X 

DEF FN SY(X) - 139 » (1 - 
X> 

DEF FN XL'YP) - 279 - YP » 
• 279 159) 

PRINT TAB' 13) "WHAT FCT'" 
P«(l) m "PARABOLA" :P»< 2) = " 
OUARTIC" :P»<3> = "SIN<X«PI>" 

FOR I = 1 TO 3: PRINT TAB< 

9)1" . "P»< I ) : NEXT 
GET K: ON K GOSUB 97,98,99 
I F ABS < K - 1 ) 1 THEN 1 

70 
INPUT "NEW LAMBDA-? " ;L 
INPUT "NEW SEED-' "|S 
TEXT : HGR : HC0L0R- 3: REM 
HPLOT CURVE 
GOSUB 2: OS - S 
FOR I - TO 279 

Y - FN F< I - 279) 
YP = FN SY(Y) 

HPLOT I ,YP: NEXT 
HPLOT 279,0 TO 0,139 

Y - FN F(S):YP = FN SY(Y) 
XP « FN SXf S) :X - S 

HPLOT XP.139 TO XP.YP 
REM CURA'E.LINE.CUPUE 
XP - FN SX<X):YP » FN SY(Y 

XL » FN XL(YP) :Y0 « i P 



change if you change the function (e.g., a 
sine wave). These are called universal 
constants. 

Listing 1 is the program as written for 
an Apple II + . Lines 2 to 100 are sub- 
routines. In lines 1010 to 1030 we define 
screen coordinates. Then the program 
begins, with the user selecting one of 
three functions, one of which is the 
parabola. Lines 1120 to 1210 plot the 
curve and the vertical line above the 
seed. Lines 1250-1310 represent the 
main do-loop. The menu begins on line 
1320 and continues through line 1410. 

On the menu are options: select a new 
lambda or new seed, change the function 



1270 HPLOT XP.YP TO XL.YP 

1280 X - Y;Y - FN F<X> 

1290 YP - FN SY<Y) 

1300 HPLOT XL.YO TO XL.YP 

1310 IF PEEK ( - 16384) < > 16 

THEN 1250 
1320 GOSUB 3: TEXT : HOME 
1330 GOSUB 4: PRINT TAB< 13)"SE 

LECT FROM:" 
1340 PRINT : FOR I - 1 TO 6: PRINT 

TAB< 9)C»( I ) : NEXT 
1330 PRINT : PRINT TAB< 9)"LAMD 

A-"L",SEED«"S: GET C* 
1360 IF CI • 'Q' THEN TEXT : HOME 

: END 
1370 IF C» - "S" THEN 1110 
1380 IF C» - "C" THEN TEXT : HGR 

: GOSUB 2: GOTO 1230 
1390 IF ;« - "F" THEN 1050 
1400 IF C» = "E" THEN 1400 
1410 IF CI < > "L" THEN 1320 
1420 NL - NL ♦ 1 : IF NL - 10 THEN 

GOSUB 100 
1430 LCND - L: FOR I - 1 TO NL 
1440 PRINT TAB< 1 ) "LAMBDAC " I ■ ) 

»"L(I> 
1450 NEXT :0L - L: PRINT 
1460 INPUT "NEW LAMBDA-'" ;L 
1470 PRINT "WANT NEW SEED">(Y/N>" 

1480 GET C*: IF C* - "Y" THEN PRINT 

"OLD SEED - "S: GOTO 1110 
1490 IF C» > < "N" THEN 1470 
1500 GOTO 1120 
1600 TEXT : HGR : HCOLOR- 3 
1610 A - l:B • 0: GOSUB 3 
1620 FOR I - 1 TO 20 :Y - 



FN F<X 



) 



1630 
1632 
1640 
1630 

1660 

1670 



1680 
1690 
1700 
1710 
1720 
1730 
1740 

1750 
1920 
9998 
9999 



IF A > X THEN A « X 

IF B < X THEN B - X 
X - Y: NEXT :Y - FN F<X> 
AB = .5 » <1 ♦ A / B):A - AB 

« A 

PRINT "A-"A" ,B-A-"B - A", LA 
MBDA»"L" ,SEED-"S 

GOSUB 3:IFB-A<10- - 
9 THEN PRINT "UNDERFLOW. HI 
T ANY KEY": GET C« : GOTO 132 

XL « FN XL<YP): POKE 216,0 

ONERR GOTO 1920 

HPLOT XP.YP TO XL.YP 
X - FN F<X):Y = FN F<X) 
YL - YP: GOSUB 5 

HPLOT XL.YL TO XL.YP 

IF PEEK < - 16384) < > 16 
THEN 1680 

GOTO 1320 

CALL 768: GOTO 1620 

DATA 104,168,104,166,223 

DATA 154,72,132,72,96 



142 



or quit, clear the screen (which could 
better have been called erase), and "en- 
large," which is an attempt at magnifica- 
tion of the picture when the details get 
too small. It is with this feature that you 
can get the rectangles-within-rectangles 
patterns. 

For a universal constant with your 
name on it, just copy the program, run it, 
and follow the dot. Happy staring! B 

Reference 

|1| Douglas R. Hofstadter, Scientific 
American, November 1983, "Metamagical 
Themas." 

October 1984 c Creative Computing 



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There is a certain bit of magic in the 
Logo language that makes learning a lot 
of fun. Mathematics, geometry, and 
other subjects are no longer boring 
school subjects. On the computer screen, 
they become brain-teasers and other 
enjoyable discoveries that can help 
young people learn to think. The value 
of this learning fun was dramatically 
demonstrated the summer the Young 
People's Logo Association was formed. 

For several hours each week, a group 
of young people ranging in age from 6 to 
13, met in a Richardson, TX, garage to 
explore Logo and the computer. Fourth 
of July fireworks, lunar lander games, 
and some intriguing graphics were the 
visible results of these sessions. 

But what were the kids learning? 

As a very simple experiment, the kids 
were asked to draw some random angles 
on blank paper: "If the turtle drew a line 
on the screen, made 147 turtle turns, and 
then drew another line, what would the 
screen look like? What about 217 turns? 
313 turns?" 

These same questions were then posed 
to circuit designers, who acknowledged 
that the kids were able to visualize the 
angles more accurately than they were. 
As engineers, they relied on their tools 
rather than their imaginations to mea- 
sure angles and distances. However, the 
engineers did claim credit for drawing 
straighter lines. 

One of the ways to help children learn 
to visualize angles and distances is 
through "target practice." A simple way 
to start is to place stickers on the screen 
and then see who can move the turtle to 
the sticker in the fewest moves. A 
slightly more complex version of the 
same exercise is to play "turtle base- 
ball." Place four stickers on the screen, 
one of which is home plate. Then see 



James Muller 



who can move around the bases with the 
fewest mistakes. You can make the game 
as simple or as complex as you choose. 
The important thing is to practice 
visualizing angles and distances on the 
screen. 

Atari Logo offers some nice features 
for making an enjoyable game out of an- 
gle and distance practice. Where most 
other versions have one triangular turtle, 
Atari Logo has four turtles, each of 



The important thing is 

to get the players to 

think about what they 

are doing, to think 

beyond the limits of 

the computer keyboard 

and screen. 



which can act independently. The lan- 
guage also has collision detection to test 
if two turtles are touching. In the target 
practice game shown in Listing 1, one of 
the turtles is randomly placed on the 
screen. Then, by typing the word, ZAP, 
followed by an angle and a distance, a 
second turtle is "zapped" at the target. 
If the two touch, the screen flashes and a 
message appears at the bottom of the 
screen. 

The T procedure sets up the game. 
random will not select a negative num- 
ber. Thus, the statement is written that 



if the random number is 0, the com- 
puter will select a number between and 
110. If not, it will subtract a random 
number from 0. The result will provide 
the numbers required for the procedure 
angle :num. The target turtle will turn 
right the number of degrees selected, 
and the procedure will then pick a ran- 
dom distance. To keep it interesting the 
distance ranges from SO to 1 10. 

Once the target turtle appears on the 
screen, the player must type in ZAP fol- 
lowed by an angle and a distance. The 
first turtle then turns right and moves 
the distance selected. The PX represents 
Penreverse. In this mode, the turtle 
draws a line where none exists. How- 
ever, when asked to move back, it erases 
any line previously drawn. The com- 
puter then tests: if turtles 1 and 2 are 
not in a coNDition of touching, then 
the first will wait 20, move back the dis- 
tance entered, and SETHeading to 
again. 

when turtles 1 and 2 are touching, 
control turns over to the cheers proce- 
dure. The background flashes, and 
"Congratulations" appears at the bot- 
tom of the screen. 

Games like this can, of course, be 
written for any version of Logo. Scoring 
and multiple-player options can add to 
the appeal. The important thing is to get 
the players to think about what they are 
doing, to think beyond the limits of the 
computer keyboard and screen. There 
are few things as exciting as watching a 
child's imagination in action. However, 
there is a marvelous quotation of un- 
known origin which helps put the value 
of imaginative play into perspective: "He 
who has imagination without learning 
has wings but no feet." 

The author must have been thinking 
of Logo. ■ 



October 1984 ° Creative Computing 



147 



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3 



Listing 1. Turtle Target Practice Game. 

TO FLASH :CLR 

SETBG :CLR 

WAIT 5 

MAKE "CLR :CLR ♦ 7 

IF :CLR > 126 C SETBG 74 STOP] 

FLASH « CLR 

END 

TO CHEERS 

CT 

REPEAT 5 t PR I NT [CONGRATULATIONS! 3 3 

FLASH 7 

T 
END 



CO 1 2 33 CS 



TO T 

CT 

TELL 

ST 

IF - RANDOM 

WHEN TOUCHING 

END 

:NUM 



CANGLE RANDOM 1113 [ANGLE 
2 [CHEERS] 



< RANDOM 111 ) 3 



TO ANGLE 

TELL 2 

PENUP 

SETH 

RIGHT :NUM 

MAKE "DIS < ( RANDOM 6\ 

FORWARD :DIS 

END 



) ♦ 50 > 



TO ZAP :ANG :DIS 

ASK 1 CRT :ANG PX FD :DIS3 

IF NOT COND TOUCHING 1 2 [ASK 1 

END 



[WAIT 20 BACK :DIS SETH 03] 



TO START 

TS CT 

SETCURSOR [0 33 

PRINT [Welcome to the game of . . . 3 

SETCURSOR [0 53 

PRINT [«#««* ZAP THE TURTLE * « * * »3 

SETCURSOR [0 83 

PRINT [A turtle will appear somewhere or>3 

PRINT [the screen. Can you guess the angle3 

PRINT Cto turn and the distance to3 

PRINT [Zap the Turtle?! 

PRINT ■ 

PRINT [To play the game, type ZAP and then! 

PRINT [the angle you need to -face the3 

PRINT [other turtle and the distance you3 

PRINT [need to go to hit it. To turn LEFT , 3 

PRINT [use a negative number, such asl 

PRINT [ZAP -55 40 To turn RIGHT, use a3 

PRINT [a positive number, such as ZAP 80 803 

PRINT " 

PRINT [To start the game, press 'T and then3 

PRINT [press RETURN. 3 

END 




CIRCLE 130 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



October 1 984 c Creative Computing 



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A New Face For Western Union 




Telecommunications 
Talk 



The telegraph company ain't what it 
used to be. 

Western Union, which long ago 
phased out the uniformed delivery boy 
on the bicycle, is now entering the busi- 
ness and personal computer arena in a 
big way with its own computer tele- 
communications system called EasyLink. 

EasyLink places virtually all of West- 
ern Union's worldwide communications 
net at your disposal. With EasyLink you 
can receive or send messages to or from 
any Telex terminal. You can use it to 
send Mailgrams, E-COM mail, Cable- 
grams, and telegrams. You can send 
messages on a priority basis and request 
notification of message delivery. You 
can also use the system to send a mailing 
to up to 250 addresses, one of several 
mass mailing schemes that allows you to 
hit a broad or selected set of addresses. 

EasyLink also includes a service they 
call F.Y.I, which offers news, sports, 
weather and human interest features 
much as you would find on the informa- 
tion utilities. Here we shall concentrate 
on Easy Link's powerful message system. 

When you subscribe to the service you 
get a set of codes for use in logging onto 
the system and an 800 number to use to 
access the network. You also get a mail- 
box number, and a Telex number. If you 
have questions Western Union provides 
an 800 number to call to reach a cus- 
tomer assistance representative. 

The most valuable article they send 
you is the EasyLink user manual, which 
is without doubt one of the best I have 
ever seen. Written with the needs of the 
average user in mind, it explains all the 
procedures for using the system in pre- 
cise, unambiguous prose. It will surely 
abbreviate the amount of time required 
to learn to use the service. The result of 



Brian J. Murphy 

all this attention is the very strong im- 
pression that Western Union is going to 
care and be there if you have problems 
with the system and need a little hand 
holding and advice. 

Once you have logged on and entered 
your various access codes, you see the 
prompt, PTS (which stands for Proceed 
To Select). It is here that you enter the 
correct "address" for the type of 
EasyLink service you want. 

To send a Telex message you enter the 
telex number and the answerback num- 
ber. For worldwide Telex you append a 
country code to the number. To send to 
an EasyLink mailbox, you simply key in 
the appropriate eight-digit number for 
the party you want to reach. 

If you want to send a Mailgram, you 



enter the command /ZIP, then the ad- 
dress of the recipient. For a telegram 
you enter a /PMS command. /INT is 
the command for an international Cable- 
gram, and for InfoCom you append the 
command /ICS. 

Computer letters come in three fla- 
vors: Computer Letter Service (delivery 
in three days), E-COM (delivery in two 
business days or less), and Overseas 
Priority Letter (delivered in two business 
days). To send a computer letter you 
first key in the EasyLink address, 
62900396. This must be done before you 
use a slash command to access one of the 
three services. Once you get the GA 
(Go Ahead) prompt you can then enter 
the /CLS (computer letter service), 
/ECOM, or /OPL (overseas priority 
letter) command. 

Having decided on the service, the 
next step is to enter the message. That is 
not a problem, as long as you adhere to 




150 



October 1 984 ( Creative Computing 



BUYING A PASSWORD MODEM 
CAN SAVE YOU UP TO $250. 

AND THAT AIN'T HAYES! 



You can bank on it. Your outlay will be less than 
if you settle for our major competitor, but not 
your output 1 A Password modem sends and 
receives up to 1 20 characters per second. Pro- 
vides both 1 200 and 300 baud capacity. Offers 
total mterchangeability that lets you transmit 
information from any make microcomputer 
to any other make. And your investment 
is protected by a 2-year warranty. 

Unlike our major competitor. Password 
delivers operating simplicity, plus the 
convenience of uncommon portability. 
Thanks to lighter weight, it goes almost 
anywhere. And because of the ingenuity 
of Velcro strips, it attaches wherever 
you need it. from the side of a desk to 
the side of a computer 1 



This means that Password doesn't tie you 

down, and its price won't hold you up. It features 

auto-dial, auto-answer, and even knows when 

to disconnect. If you re cost conscious. 

but refuse to sacrifice high-speed 

capability and performance, hook up 

with the right modem — Password . 

The smart decision. 



PASSWORD 

by U.S. Robotics. Inc. 



^W ^ 








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1123 W Washington 
Chicago. IL 60607 
Phone:(312)733-0497 
Outside Illinois: 
1-800-DIAL USR 



"Based on suggested reta ; 
comparisons ol U S Robotics. Inc 
and Hayes Microcomputer Products. Inc 



Hayes. Leading the way 
with quality telecomputing 
systems for the personal 
computers that businesses 
use most. 



When it comes to communicating- 
computer to computer— Hayes says it 
best. All you need is a Hayes Smart- 
modem (its like a telephone for your 
computer) and Smartcom If software, 
to get you into all the right places. 

In no time at all. and with no assis- 
tance at all. you can create, send and 
store files, and automatically log on 
to information services. The communi- 
cation possibilities are endless! 

Introducing our new Smartcom U. 

More connection capabilities. 

More convenience. 

Now Hayes goes even further to stream- 
line your communications and optimize 
your connections. 

Smartcom II software is currently 
available for more than 16 personal 
computers (with even more to come). 
That means you can communicate. 



Smartcom to Smartcom. with an IBM PC. 
DEC Rainbow 100. HP 150, TI Profes- 
sional Computer* and others. 

And that's not all! Smartcom II also 
emulates the DEC VT100 and VT52 
terminals, now in widespread use in 
many businesses. This feature lets your 
personal computer "pretend" it's a DEC 
terminal, opening the door to a vast 
installed base of DEC minicomputers! 

We stand on protocol. 

In addition to the popular Hayes 
Verification protocol, the new Smart- 
com II also includes the XMODEM 
protocol, ensuring accurate transmis- 
sion to a wide range of personal com- 
puters and mainframes at information 
services. By matching the protocol (or 
"language ") of a remote computer to 
yours. Smartcom II can transmit informa- 
tion error-free, regardless of interference 
on the phone lines. 



^■■H 






'When I got this computer 
I thought my problems were 
over Then it dawned 
on me I needed to talk 
to the PC in sales and 
the Tlin accounting. 
What I needed was the 
right modem and 
software, so I went 
with the leader!" 



% 




\ 



Voice to data-in the same calif 

With Smartcom II. you can easily switch 
from voice to data transmission (and 
back again), all in the same phone call. 
This saves you time and money, since 
you don't have to hang up and dial again. 

Your Haves telecomputing system 
works— totally unattended. 

Smartcom II makes telecomputing 
simple, even when you're not there. 
It allows your Smartmodem to receive 
a message for you when you're out. 
and leave it on your disk or printer. 
And you can tell Smartcom II to "save" 
the messages you've created during 
the day. and automatically send them 
at night, when phone rates are lowest. 

Get your hands on the leader 

With an unsurpassed record of relia- 
bility, it's a small wonder Smartmodem 




A 



is such a smart buy! Smartmodem 300™ 
(the first of the Smartmodem series) 
dials, answers and disconnects calls 
automatically. Smartmodem 1200™ and 
Smartmodem 1200B™ (it plugs into an 
expansion slot inside an IBM PC or 
compatible), provide high-speed, high- 
performance communications for busi- 
nesses of all sizes. 

And when Smartmodem is purchased 
with Smartcom II. you have the most 
dependable telecomputing system 
available for your personal computer. 

Everything we do at Hayes is designed 
to make communications easier for you. 
Feature-rich, direct<onnect modems. 
Menu-driven software. Concise docu- 
mentation. And a customer service 
organization, second to none! 

See your dealer right now for a hands- 
on demonstration of Smartmodem and 
our latest version of Smartcom II. From 
the telecompating leader. Hayes. 







Hayes 

Hayes Microcomputer Products. Inc. 
5923 Peachtree Industrial Blvd. 
Norcross. Georgia 30092 404/441-1617. 
CIRCLE 146 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Smartcom II is a registered trademark of Hayes Microcomputer Products. Inc Snurtmodem )00. Snurtmodem 1200 and Smartmodem 1200B are trademarks of Hayes Microcomputer Products. Inc. 
•Trademarks of International Business Machines Corp.. Dajtol ErfuJpntnt Carpoiaooa Hewien Packard and 1ex« U 



Simulator]! 



ivn] 



ourself in the pilot's seat of a Piper 181 Cherokee Archer for an awe-inspiring flight over realistic scene 
from New York to Los Angeles. High speed color-filled 3D graphics will give you a beautiful panoramic vii 
as you practice takeoffs, landings, and aerobatics. Complete documentation will get you airborne quickly 
even if you've never flown before. When you think you're ready, you can play the World War I Ace aerial battle 
game. Flight Simulator II features include ■ animated color 3D graphics ■ day, dusk, and night flying mode: 
■ over 80 airports in four scenery areas: New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, with additional scenery 
areas available ■ user-variable weather, from clear blue skies to grey cloudy conditions ■ complete flight 
instrumentation ■ VOR, ILS, ADF, and DME radio equipped ■ navigation facilities and course plotting ■ World 
War I Ace aerial battle game ■ complete information manual and flight handbook. 



See your dealer . . . 

or lor direct orders enclose S49.95 plus $2.00 lor shipping and specify UPS 
or first class mail delivery. American Express, Diner's Club. MasterCard, and 
Visa accepted. 

Order Line: 800 / 637-4983 



Qfl[o)LOGIC 

Corporation 
713 Edgebrook Drive 
Champaign IL 61820 

(217) 359-8482 Telex. 206995 



Telecommunications 



these text and line width restrictions: 

EasyLink and EasyLink Telex — 
50,000 characters total, no line width 
restriction. 

All Telex — 50,000 characters total, 68 
characters per line. 

Cablegram, Telegram, and Mailgram 
— 15,000 characters total, 68 per line. 

Computer Letter Service — No more 
than 371 lines, 68 characters per line. 

E-COM— Total 97 lines, 68 charac- 
ters per line. 

Overseas Priority Letter — 363 lines 
total, 68 characters per line. 

The line is ended simply with an 
enter or return, depending on your 
terminal or computer. The end of the 
message is signaled by an LLLL at the 
start of a new line followed by enter. If 
you have made no mistakes in writing 
your message, the system responds with 
a MESSAGE ACCEPTED prompt. 
You may begin a new message right 
away. 

Before I move on to pricing, a word 
about Telexing. This is one of the most 
exciting services WU offers. If you have 
ever seen the big, bulky, blue Telex ma- 
chine, which performs only one func- 
tion, you can readily appreciate the 
advantage of being able to dispense with 
it all together in favor of your personal 



computer work station. Add to this the 
ability to use your personal computer 
word processor in preparing your mes- 
sage (EasyLink will show you how) and 
the accessibility of so many other mes- 
sage services and you have a powerful 
argument in favor of the EasyLink 
service. 



Western Union claims 

that some of their own 

services are actually 

cheaper on EasyLink 

than they are by 

phoning Western Union 

to send a cable or wire. 



I was all set to tell you that this was 
an expensive service, but it isn't. In fact, 
Western Union claims that some of their 
own services are actually cheaper on 
EasyLink than they are by phoning 
Western Union to send a cable or a wire. 

There is no subscription fee or start- 
up expense of any kind. They send all 
the materials, including the password 
codes and the loose-leaf manual, at no 



charge. Nor is there a minimum charge 
for the first three months of use. You 
will be billed for each message you send, 
however, according to the applicable 
rate structures. Starting with the fourth 
month there is a $25 monthly minimum 
use fee. 

Here are some sample fees to give you 
an idea of the pricing of various services 
(all based on 300 baud transmission): 

EasyLink to EasyLink — $.30 minute. 

Telegram — $1.80 minute plus $3.00 
service charge from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 
p.m., $1.50 from 7:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. 

Mailgram — First page, $3.00; sub- 
sequent pages $.75 each. 

E-COM— First page, $1.15; sub- 
sequent pages $.30 each. 

Telex 1 to any U.S. Telex termi- 
nal — $.43 per minute. The service out- 
puts at 400 characters per minute. 

My conclusion is that EasyLink 
works, that it is affordable, and that it is 
great for businesses and professionals 
who use the mail frequently. If you can 
reduce some of your routine long dis- 
tance calls to written form, you will save 
on phone expense too. 

EasyLink info is available from West- 
ern Union, Department 38, 1651 Old 
Meadow Rd., McLean VA 22102 or by 
calling (800) 336-3797, ext. 38. ■ 



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create shapes for hi-res animation Make custom hi-res 
color type too Six proportionally-spaced fonts on the disk 
LIST-able demos teach how to use hi-res in your programs 

_J TYPEFACES for Apple Mec h ani c ($20.00) 
26 additional type fonts for use with Mechanic's programs 

OP" NEW! HIRES PICTURE-PRINTER fjp$S3^ 

_l TRIPLE-DUMP ($39.96) transfers any kind 
of image to printer Dump 40 & 80-Column text, and normal 
or Double Hi-Res pictures (lo-res too) Crop, enlarge, 
rotate, etc Also create GIANT BANNERS on your pnnter 1 




ALL BEAGLE BROS DISKS ARE UNPROTECTED (copy- 
" ), AND COME WITH A FREE PEEKS 4 POKES CHART. 

J ALPHA PLOT ($3950) 2-pege hi-res drawing 4 typing 

Move any image-section Compress pix to 1/3 disk space 
J BEAGLE BAG (29.50) The best Apple game bargain 

on the market today'" On 1983s Most-Popular list— So/far* 
J DISKQUIK ($29.50) Acts like half a disk dnve in Slot 3. 

but silent, fast, and 1/10 the pnee' (req lie or lie \ 
J DOS BOSS ($24.00) Customize DOS 3 3. 

*Save-protecf files with "Uncopya ble" message 

[J FLEX TYPE ($2950) Put vanable-sized text 
on the screen with normal Basic commands 

J FRAME-UP ($29.50) Create key-controlled 

or unattended snows of your screen images 9} 
J PRONTO-DOS ($29.50) Load/Save at 3X speed Move 

DOS for an extra 10K' TYPE command pnnts Text-files 
[J SILICON SALAD ($24.95) Hi-Res Program Splitter 

Disk Scanner. DOS Killer more With Command Chart 
_| TIP DISK #1 ($20.00) 100 Beagle Tip Book programs on 

disk LIST and learn Includes Apple Command Chart 
J UTILITY CITY ($2950) 21 useful utilities List Formatter 

Multi-Column Catalogs. Tnck Filenames LIST and learn! 

AT YOUR APPLE DEALER NOW! 

Or. rf you live in the Boonies. buy directly from BEAGLE BROS: 
. Visa, MasterCard or COD (orders only) 
S Phone To* Free. AJ 50 states. 24-Hours: 

1 -800-227-3800 exL1607 

Or mail US Check. Money Order 
or Visa/MasterCard numbers to: 
BEAGLE BROS, Dstpf. B 
30SO OLD TOWN AVE, SuHa 1 02C 
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA S21 1 
Add $1 50 shipping. «6* if Calif . *$3 if COD. »$4 if overseas 
—ALL ORDERS SHIPPED IMMEDIATELY— 




CIRCLE 1 10 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



_— 



It all adds up... 




IBM 



NEC PAINTERS 
NEC 2060 $899.00 

NEC 8800 $1599 CO 

TANDON 
8'V 320K Floppy $19900 

VISICORP 
VlslCalC IV $18900 

V::,lWi :.l • $ii4'J JU 

Vlsl-o: CALL 

Optica $189 99 

IDEAssoclates 
8MB to 46MB Hard drives with 
removable C up as low 

»g $139900 

AIT RESEARCH 

Six Pak Plus from $249 00 

Combo Plus II from $279 00 

Mega Plus from $299.00 

I/O F m $13900 

QUADRAM 

$479 00 
Quadboard as low as $309 00 
Quad 812 Plus as low as. ...$25900 
Quadcolor as low as $239 00 
Chronograph $89 99 

Parallel Interface Board $89 99 

64K RAM Chips Kit (9) $49 99 

•swats 



toner* 

Accounts Payable 
Accounts Recelvab] 
Payroll 
Inventory 






Open Access $449.00 



MICROPRO 
WordStar Professional Pack $369 00 

MICROMIM 

R Base 4000 $329 00 

MULTIM ATE INT. 

$~8900 
MICROSTUF 

Crossta - $108 00 

MICROSOFT 

$139 00 
ASHTOH-TATS 

Framework. $439 00 

cBASE II upgrade $14900 

dBASE II $299 00 

dBASE HI $42900 

Friday! $17900 

IU» 
Easy Writer 11 $249 00 

EasySpeller $119 00 

EasyFi:- $229 00 

CONTINENTAL SOFTWARE 
1st Cla: i Letter $79 99 

Home Accounting Plus $88 99 

LOTUS 
Symphony $549 00 

123 $31900 

PROFESSIONAL SOFTWARE 



Please (Data Base 



Electronic Arts 

One on On* 

Music Construction 

Ptnball Construction 
^gyyMJfSffffff^ 

Hani Hat U 



Enchanter 

Suspended 

Sorcerer 






VlslCorp 
VlsiCalc 



PC Plus/The Boss $299 00 

STNAPSR 

$269 00 File Manager $89 99 



SOFTWARE 

c 64 Atari 

(29 99 NA 

$2999 $2999 

(2999 (2999 



$M M 

IZ9 M 
$M N 
$27 99 

■| ■ 

(34 99 
(34 99 

$76 99 

$UM M 



$29 99 
i29 99 

$M H4 

$29 99 

$M N 



N A 



$89 H 

$aa n 

$M 39 

$27 99 

$29 99 

(29 99 
$29 99 
$M M 
|BB OS 
$M M 

$£7 ftfl 

(28 99 
(26 99 
(2S99 

$26 99 
•26 99 

$178 99 



$|9 M 

$29 M 
$M M 
».lu MJ 
$27 99 

$M M 

$89 tin 
$29 99 

In m 

(29 99 
$89 M 
$89 M 
$27 99 



(28 6 
(26 99 
(26 99 
(26 99 
(28 99 

(166 99 

HM M 



pfs 



.V..Ui 

iow as 



utnble Oames 
ddltlon Magician 









■MJ tin 








(79 99 






(68 M 


(79 99 











HtXlsTT Rabbit 



PRINTERS 

MANNESMAN TALLY 

160L $589 00 

180L $79900 

Spirit 80 W80.00 



AXIOM 

AT- 100 Atari Interface Prlnter$199 00 
OP 100 Parallel Interface $18900 
OP 680 Atari Bidirectional $319 00 
OP-700 Atari Color Printer $4 89.000 

OP 660 Parallel Printer $869.00 8087 Dot Matrix 

IMC Pinwrlter 

401 Letter Quality $889.00 8010/18/? 

BX-80 Dot Matrix. $269 00 3810/18/3 

C.ITOH ^10/18/30 

Oorllla Banana $149 00 



CALL 

$749 00 

$1369 00 

$1799 00 



OLYMPIA 



Prowrlter 8B10P $379 00 Compact 2 $469 00 

Prowrlter 1660P $899 00 Compact BO $499 00 

A10(18cps)8onof 8tarwrlterSB69.00 ESW 3000 $139900 

Hot Dot Matrix CALL SMITH CORONA 

F10-40 Starwrltei $999.00 TP-10OO ..$449.00 

F 10-88 Prlntmaster $1349 00 Tractor Feed $119 00 

COMUX SILVER AMD 

ComWrlterll Letter Quallty$449 00 800 Letter Quality $399.00 

DIABLO 880 Letter Qual:' $489.00 

820 Letter Quality $949 00 770 Letter Quality $869 00 

630 Letter Quality $174900 STAR 

DA 1ST WRITER Gemini 10X $279 00 

2000 $99900 Oemlnl 18X $389 00 



Gemini Powe 
Serial Board 
Radix 
Radix 



540 



■FSON 

RX-80. RX-80FT. RX 100 CALL 

FX 80. FX-100 CALL 

LQ 1600 CALL 

ID* 
Prism 80. ..For Configuration 
Prism 32 ..For Configuration 

JUKI 
6100 $469 00 

OKIDATA 
82. 83. 84. 92. 93. 2360. 2410 CALL 

a«».x MONITORS , A] 

300 Green $149 00 8C-100 Color 

3O0 Amber $169.00 SO 1000 < 

-tir, Amher $169 00 8A-1OO0 Amti- 

Color 1 Plus ' 00 TAXAN 



$389 00 
$75 00 

$899.00 

$899.00 
TOSHIBA 

$829.00 

$1449 00 

TRAN8TAR 

120P $469 00 

130P. $64900 

318 Color $48900 



9 00 
$129 00 
$139 00 



Hew Color 3O0.400.SO0.6O0.700 CALL 4O0 Med Res ROB $31900 

Color 4T IBM .. $69900 416 HI Res ROB $439 00 

420 HI Res ROB (IBM) $469 00 



BMC 

1201 (12" Oreenl 

liiOl Fi^iS U*i tileel. 11 

9191 Plus Color. 

OOBILLA 

12" Oreen 



$88 99 

tl.$98.S9 
$249 00 



100 12' 
106 12' 



$«H 99 

$9S99 



.IB 1201 Oreen. 
JB 



$109 00 
$149 99 



Pi 1 

r: 4 
140C 



Oreen $128 00 

p#_9£|— ~ $135.00 

Oreen $99.99 

$119 99 



QUAORAM 



1208 Amber $189 99 Quadchrome 8400 Color $499.00 



JB 1218 Color $259 00 

<JC 1216 ROB $42900 

JC 1480 Col 

PRINCETON GRAPHICS 

MAX 12 Amber $19900 

$499 00 
$659 00 

MODEMS 

ANCHOR A»AWA»AJ 

Volksmodem $59 99 

Mark IL Serial $79 99 

Mark VII (Auto Ans/Auto Diali$99 99 

«iOO Baud) $..' • H 

Mark TRS-80 $99 99 

9 Volt Power Supply $9 99 

HATB9 

Smartmodem 300 $199.00 

ii $499 00 

Smartmodem 1200B $449 00 

Mlcromodem lie. $269 00 

Mlcromodem 100 $299 00 

Smart Com II $89 99 

Chronograph $199.00 



ZENITH 

ZVM 128 Amber ., 

183 Oreen $8 

M124 IBM-Amber $149 

ZVM13: $309.00 

ZVM133 ROB $439 00 

ZVM 136 ROB/Composlte $469 00 



NOVATION 

J-Cat. $9999 

Cat $13900 

Smart Cat 103 $179.00 

(mart Oat 103/2. 1° A399 00 

$219.00 

$849 00 

$249 00 

$449 00 

$2B9 00 

$369 00 



212 AutoCat 

Apple Cat II 

812 Apple Ce 

Apple Cat 218 Upgrade 

Smart Cat Plus 

ZXHITH 

ZT 1 $339 00 

ZT 10 $309 00 

ZT11 $369 00 




west 
800-648-3311 

In NV call (702)588-5664. Dept. 112 

Order Status Number. 588-5654 

P.O.Box 6689 

Statellne. NV 89449 



canada 

Ontario/Quebec 800-268-3974 
Other Provincos800-Z68-4559 

In Toronto call (416)828-0866. Dept. 112 
Order Status Number: 628-0866 
2606 Dunwln Drive. Unit 3B 
Mississauga, Ontario. Canada L5L1T1 



orders and no waiting period for certified checks or money orders. Add 3** i 
ire additional charges. NV and PA residents add sales tax. All Items subj< 



800-233-8850 ------ 

In PA call (717)327-9576, Dept. 112 
Order Status Number 327-9576 
Customer Service Number: 327-1460 
477 E. 3rd St.. Wtlllamsport. PA 17701 

minimum $8) shipping and handling on all orders. 
et to availability and price change Call today for 



the best prices 



7£*tTM 

data systems 

PC COMPATIBLE 
16 BIT SYSTEMS 



APPLE/FRANKLIN 
DISK DRIVES 

MICRO SCI 



A* 

A20 



$279 00 








-via 



HP 71B S4 19.99 

410V S18S.SB 

41CX $248. eg 

HP 11C $62 99 

HP 12C $92 99 

HP 1BC $92 99 

HP 16C $92 99 

HP 76D 8879,99 

HPIL Module $98 99 

Cassette or Printer $389 99 
Card Reader 

Extended Function Module $63 99 
Time Module $63 99 



f FRANKLIN 



F 



HOME COMPUTERS 




IBTDUS 

QT-Dnve (Apple) $249 00 

©SANYO 



ACE 1000 Color Computer CALL 

HO PLUS 8ystem CALL 

.100 Office Mgmt. SystemCALL 

ACF. PORTABLES^""""""""/ CAI.I. 

APPLE 



ATARI 



APPLE lie STARTER PACK 
o4K Apple He, Disk Drive * Controller. 
80 Column Card. Monitor II * DOS 3 3 

COMPLETE CALL 

APPLE He CALL 

APPLB lie CALL 

MacINTOSH CALL 



MBC 880 CALL 

MBC SB0-2 CALL 

MBC 888 CALL 

MBC 888-8 CALL 

HEWLETT PACKARD 




880 Interface $18900 

1010 Recorder $7199 

1020 Color Printer $81900 

1028 Dot Matrix Printer $299 00 
1027 Letter Quality Printer $289 00 
1030 Direct Connect Modem. $99 99 

1080 Disk Drive $349 00 

1064 Memory Module $12800 

Touch Table/Software $64 99 

Light Pen/Software $72 99 

CX22 Track Ball $39 99 

7097 Atari Logo $74 99 

4018 Pilot (Home) $87 99 

408 Pilot (Educ ) $99 99 

8036 Atari Pilot $77 99 

S049 VlslCalc $139 99 

468 Communicator II $119 99 



WHILE SUPPLYS LAST 

600XL $189.00 

800XL $819.00 

1800XL $849.00 

CX30 Paddles $11 99 

CX40 Joystick $7.99 

4011 Star Raiders $31 99 

4022 Pac Man $31 99 

4026 Defender $31 99 

8026 Dig Dug $3199 

8031 Donkey Kong $38 99 

8034 Pole Po: 

8040 Donkey Kong $33 99 

8043 Ms Pacn,> $37 99 

8044 Joust $37 99 
8048 Pengo $33 99 
8082 Moon Patrol $33 99 
4003 Assembler $44 99 
8126 Microsoft Basic I or II $64 99 
Super Sketch Graphics Board. .$39. 99 



SHARP 

PC-1B00A ties. SB 

PC lgBOA $88.99 

CE 125 Printer/Cassette $128 99 

CE 180 Color Printer Cassette$171.99 

IK HAM $29 99 

8K RAM $49 99 

16K RAM $13499 

CE 600 ROM Library ea $29 99 



DISK DRIVES 
FOR ATARI 

IHDUS 

OT Drive (Atari) $379 00 



MEMORY BOARDS 
ATABI 

Axlon 32K $69 99 

Axlon 48K $99 99 

Axlon 128K $299 00 1000 $299 00 

AFFLIir«*IILI> 

Axlon 128K $299.00 AT D2 

Axlon 320K $849 00 AT D4 



..$389.00 
$639 00 



ft commodore 



s p^ 



NEC 

PC8221A Thermal Prlnter$149 99 

PC 8281 A Data Recorder $99 99 

PC-8201-06 8K RAM Chips $10500 
PC 8206A 32K RAM Cartrldge$329 00 



CBM 80S* $839.00 

CBM 8096 $869 00 

CBM 9000 $99900 

B12880 $76900 

8032 to 9000 Upgrade $499 00 



8X64 Portable 8839.00 

CBM 84 $109.00 

C1641 Disk Drive $249 00 

C1630 Datasette $69 99 

CI 520 Color Printer/Plotter $129 00 
U ool Dot Matrix Printer $219.00 



2031 LP Disk Drr. $299 00 C1826 Dot M.i 19 00 



DISKETTES 



B'/«" KM. $21 99 

B'VMD-2 $2999 

8 FD i $39.99 

8" FD 8 $49 99 

VERBATIM 

B«i" SS'DD $26 99 

: 
■BBsBsBHBBV bib 

S'V Disk Head Cleaner $14 99 



8"«" SS/8D $17 99 

6V«" SS/DD $21 99 

S DD $26 99 

DISK HOLDERS 
IHWOVATIVE COMCBPTS 

$3 90 

$17.99 

File BO w/lock $24 99 

Flip n Pile (400(800 ROM) $1799 



lioala 

Atari (ROM) $79 99 IBM $99 99 

C 64 (ROMI $79 99 Apple ■Franklin $86 99 



8080 Disk Drive $999 00 

8260 Disk Drive $1249 00 

4023 Printer $399.00 

8023 Printer $889 00 

6400 Printer $144900 

7. RAM $36900 

Silicon Office $499 00 

The Manager $199 00 

SoftROM $125.00 

VlslCal $16900 

PRECISION SOFTWARE 

8uperbase 64 $69 99 

PROFE88IOWAL SOFTWARE 

Word Pro 2 Phis ^^^ B *$lW»oo 
Word Pro 3 Plus $189 00 

Word Pro 4 Plus/8 Plus each$279 00 
Info Pro $179 00 

Administrator $399 00 

Power $79 99 



$289 00 
$4 99 
$11 99 

c 1 600 "vTCTeWtmT^T^^^^BwW 

C16B0 Auto Modem $89 99 

Logo 64 $49 99 

Pilot 64 $39 99 

Word Pro 64 Plus $89 99 

CalC R« ..'<■■'. $!,:■■<■< 

Calc Result Easy $39 99 

MCS 801 Color Printer $499 00 

DPS 1 1 $489 OO 

Magic Voice Speech Module $64 99 
Desk Organizer Lock $49 99 

Vidlex Telecommunications $34 95 

Super Sketch Graphics Board $39 99 

USD DISK DRIVES 
SD1 Disk Drive $349 00 

SD2 Disk Drive $599 00 




west 
800-648-3311 

In NV call (702)688-8684, Dept. 118 

Order Status Number: 588-5654 

P.O.Box 6689 

Statellne. NV 89449 



Canada 

Ontario/Quebec 800-268-3974 
Other Provincas800-268-4559 

In Toronto call (416)828-0866, Dept. 

Order Status Number: 828-0866 

2606 Dunwln Drive. Unit 3B 

Mlssissautfa. Ontario. Canada L5L1T1 



800-233-8850 



VISA 



In PA call (717)327-9575. Dept. 112 
Order Status Number: 327 9576 
Customer Service Number: 327- 1480 
477 E. 3rd St., Wllllamsport. PA 17701 



INADIAN ORDERS All prices are subject to shipping, tax and currency fluctuations Call for exact pricing in Canada I 
err, pSI I with U S RIbwI Hi delivery outside the Continental United States must be pre paid b.v ■ ■ ■ . : ■..■■■* 
shipping and handling EDUCATIONAL DISCOUNTS Additional discounts are available to qualified Educational Institutions 
$6) shipping and handling. 

CIRCLE 115 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



[minimum 



A Big Printer, A Tiny Printer, 
and A Spooler 



Print 





it 



Printers 



Time to put yourself online and dump 
that buffer. Let's engage in a little hard 
copy concerning hard copy, okay? Form 
feeding requires some care, you know. 
You can't just go around line feeding 
here and there and always expect to 
come out at the top of form. That's why 
we're here. 

The warm weather is beginning to 
wind down in our neck of the woods, 
and that means just one thing; got to 
start thinking about stocking up on fan- 
fold and ribbons. It might be a long 
winter. 

We'll take a look at the Datasouth DS 
220 this time around, and catch up a bit 
on our new products buffer. We'll also 
reach into the mailbag — so make your- 
self cozy. 

Going Datasouth 

When it comes to premium quality 
printers, we are rather fanatical here at 
the lab. If you are going to spend big 
bucks, you want perfection. Otherwise 
you might as well go the discount route. 
Over $1000? Better do things right. 

Though the looks of the DS 220 are 
somewhat reminiscent of an old Frigi- 
daire, the similarity is only skin deep. 
The Datasouth 220 is a premium quality 
machine. It offers bidirectional logic- 
seeking dot matrix print at 220 cps draft 
quality, so-called "memo-quality" at 100 
cps, and near-letter quality at 40 cps. Up 
to eight different character font and 
pitch styles may be selected. In addition, 
the DS 220 offers seven resident inter- 
national character sets and can accept 
up to 94 user-defined characters that can 
be downloaded from the host and stored 
in non-volatile memory. 

The 94 ASCII character set is printed 

158 



John J. Anderson 



in 9 x 7 matrix in draft mode, 9 x 15 
matrix in memo mode, and 18 x 48 ma- 
trix in near-letter quality mode. True 
lowercase descenders and simultaneous 
underlining are possible because of the 
nine-wire printhead. The printhead is 
rated at over a half-billion characters, 
and can be replaced on-site in a matter 
of minutes. 

An adjustable head-to-platen gap 

Figure J. The Datasouth 220 with sample printout. 



accommodates forms up to six parts in 
thickness. Fanfold forms from 3 to 15 
inches may be fed through the front or 
bottom of the printer. Manual single 
sheet feed is possible through the front 
paper feed, as pinch rollers are incor- 
porated into the paper tractors. The car- 
tridge ribbon is simple to change, and is 
rated at over 3 million characters. 

The most unique facet of the DS 220 
is its programmable control panel. LED 
indicators, a four-character digital dis- 
play, and a custom keypad make format 
set-up quick and simple. A non-volatile 



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HAT A RAGING FIRE TAUGHT US 



ABOUT RELIABLE PERSONAL PRINTERS. 



That's a printer? We've always 
known that Okidata makes the tough- 
est printers, but Robert Brannon really 
proved it. A fire left his Microline 92 
looking more like a pile of charred Silly 
Putty® than a printer, but being an 
optimist. Mr. Brannon took it to his 
Okidata dealer to see if anything could 
be salvaged. 

The service department at Wolff 
Computers in New York City wasn't 
quite as optimistic, especially when 
they saw that the heat of the blaze had 
actually melted the casing and molded 
the plastic onto the internal workings 
of the printer. 

But willing to try anything once, they 
plugged the unit into one of their com- 
puters, snapped on the print mode, 
tapped the printhead lightly, and 
Robert Brannon's smokey, burned, 
half-melted Okidata did just what it had 
always done ... it printed. It printed 
fast and it printed beautifully. 



Red-hot performance. We're not 
surprised. The durability of Okidata 
printers has become downright leg- 
endary. With a printhead that lasts well 
beyond 200,000.000 characters and 
a warranty claim rate of less than 1/2 
of 1%. 

Okidata speed and versatility have 
become famous as well. The Microline 
models print data at rates up to 200 
characters per second. That's three 
pages a minute. There's an additional 
print mode for enhanced or emphasiz- 
ed text. And their letter quality rivals a 
daisy wheel for clarity with full graphics 
printing capabilities. 

Okidata printers are fully compatible 
with all popular software packages and 
personal computers. Special configu- 
rations are available for I BM and Apple 
Macintosh™ at no extra cost. And if 
you're like Mr. Brannon and occasion- 
ally need a little service, it's easy to find 
at Xerox Service Centers nationwide. 



Every now and then any printer can 
have a rough day. but the Okidata 
Microline printers are built to take it. Call 
l-800-OKIDATA (609-235-2600 in NJ| 
for the Authorized Okidata Dealer near- 
est you. Okidata. Mt. Laurel. N| 08054. 




OKIDATA 

vt an OKI AMERICA company 

Technological Craftsmanship. 



Macintosh is a trademark ol Apple Computers Inc. 

Silly Putty is a registered trademark of 
Binney & Smith. Inc. 

CIRCLE 167 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Now you can get personal 
** with a Datasouth. 




p 




s 



ray hello to the Datasouth Personal Printer— an office -quality printer that makes 
itself right at home next to your personal computer. 

Technically speaking, the Personal Printer is "Epson compatible!' But it's better than 
the competing Epson because it also does letter-quality printing. 

Personally speaking, the Personal Printer is "checkbook compatible!' So you don't 
have to sacrifice the money you need to get the printer you want. And it comes in two 
models-one with a 10-inch and one with a 17-inch carriage. 

Make a personal visit to your local computer store, 
and bring home legendary Datasouth performance 
for an affordably personal price. The Personal 
Printer. Only from Datasouth. 




pe/iA0> 



ml 



GH PERFORMANCE MA 



Find Datasouth Printers At 
Participating OwnprtMUMtf* Stores 
And Other Fine Dealers. 



Datasouth Computer Corporation 

Box 240947 • Charlotte. NC 28224 

704/523-8500 • Telex 6843018 DASOU UW 



CIRCLE 122 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



n 

4 1 

'I 




data 



1-800-222-4528 



Printers 



memory retains the settings when power 
is turned off. 

The unit offers serial and parallel 
interface as standard, along with a 2K 
buffer. Of course, the DS 220 can also be 
programmed through software escape 
codes. 

As you might imagine, an impact 
printer racing along at 220 cps is not the 
quietest thing in the world. Despite the 
size and acoustic sealing of the unit, we 
were disappointed in its raspiness. Still, 
it would be unfair and inaccurate to 
compare it to quieter models that don't 
reach half the speed. 

Otherwise, we were quite pleased with 
the DS 220. It is really fast, and print 
quality, even in the draft mode, is quite 
acceptable (Figure 1). The unit qualifies 
as a truly smart printer — more than 50 
separate functions can be coded into the 
control panel — and remembered by the 
DS 220. 

We didn't get to see the final docu- 
mentation at press time, so we can't 
comment on it. The preliminary docu- 
mentation we did see was adequate. 

Rumor has it that IBM has chosen to 
OEM the DS 220. If they have, we can 
certainly understand why. The DS 220 
may not look like a thoroughbred, but it 
is a heavy-duty workhorse, designed for 
maximum throughput in minimum time. 

The DS 220 lists for $1695. The DS 
180, with maximum print speed of a 
very respectable 180 cps, lists for $1395. 
Both models are well worth the 
investment. 

TTX— Big Little News 

TTXpress, the smallest self-contained 
80-column printer on the market, has 
begun reaching retailers. At 11" x 4.5" x 



1.75", it fits in even a small camera case. 
It is designed to work with all popular 
handheld, portable, and transportable 
computers. 

Nearly more incredible than the 
diminutive size of the TTXpress is its 
retail list price of $229. That will make it 
irresistible to many portable computer 
owners. Self-contained battery operation 
(4 alkaline C cells) will power the TTX 
for up to 5000 lines away from AC 
power. Of course, an AC adapter is 
available. 

The unit is capable of producing leg- 
ible 7x9 dot matrix hard copy at speeds 
up to 50 cps (40 cps under battery 
power). Figure 2 is a sample printout. 
Condensed printing enables users to pro- 
duce readable 132-column spreadsheets 
and other extra-wide printouts on stan- 
dard 8.5" x 11" paper. Other print 
modes include bold or double-strike, 
underline, shadow, and true descenders. 
It can also produce graphics, at a resolu- 
tion of 72 dots per inch horizontally and 
vertically. 

As it is a thermal printer, the 
TTXpress requires special thermal paper 
to operate. It can handle roll or cut sheet 
thermal paper with friction feed. A 
Centronics parallel interface is standard, 
compatible with Epson MX-80 control 
codes. 

We hope to present a hands-on 
evaluation of the unit as soon as one 
arrives at the lab. 

TTX also offers a new non-portable 
low-cost daisywheel printer. Features of 
the TTX Plus include proportional spac- 
ing, internal motor-driven tractor feed, a 
Diablo compatible 630 interface, and 
two-color ribbon capability. At $599, the 
Plus joins the TTX 1014 daisywheel in 



the TTX product line. The 1014 has 
been reduced to a list price of $499, 
making it among the least expensive 
daisywheel printers around. At the same 
time, TTX has reported a failure rate of 
less than .5 percent on the model 1014. 

Both models sport wide 15" platens, 
bidirectional logic-seeking, interchange- 
able 100-character printwheels, and 
print speeds of 14 cps. A $399 sheet 
feeder is also available for both models. 

TTX has also announced TTX 
Macpac, for the Macintosh computer. 
This system combines a TTX 1014 with 
a 64K buffer, also accessible by the 
Imagewriter. It includes all cabling, at a 
list price of $895. 

Extended Systems ShareSpool 

Extended Systems has announced the 
ESI-2012 and ESI-2014 IBM PC and 
PC -compatible spooler cards, which 
allow up to three personal computers to 
share one printer. The ShareSpool cards 
act as intelligent printer interfaces, auto- 
matically buffering and managing print 
output. Each requires only one full 
length option slot in an IBM PC/XT, 
and no XT "think" time is required. 
Each user appears to "own" the shared 
printer exclusively. 

The model ESI-2014 ShareSpool 
offers the ability to share a parallel inter- 
faced printer with up to three personal 
computers. It appears as a printer inter- 
face adapter to the XT, while accepting 
parallel output from two additional XTs. 
When print data is first received from an 
attached computer, a "job" is opened for 
that computer — and all print data 
received from that computer are tagged 
for that "job." The job is closed when no 
data have been received for ten seconds. 



I CAN PRINT FOR UP TO 120 MINUTES ON A NEW LOAD OF BATTERIES. 
Vou can also use your programs right away since my control codes are 
Epson MX-80 compatible. Vou may also use such popular word processing 
software like Wordstar. 



Figure 2. TTXpress sample printout. 



The smallest self- 
contained printer 
on the market, 
the TTXpress. 



TTX Macpac. 




ESI ShareSpool 
printer interface card. 




161 



Printers 



Print jobs are executed on a first in-first 
out basis, and the ESI-2014 can accept 
and buffer print data from all three 
computers at the same time. 

The ESI -20 12 ShareSpool functions 
like the ESI-2014, except for serial out- 
put. Both units are equipped with 64K 
of spooler buffer space, expandable to 
128K. They are priced at SS9S each. 

Delta Doc Revisited 

The following is a letter I received 
from Eric van Hall of Star Micronics: 

I read with a great deal of interest 
your article concerning our Delta- 10 
printer in the June issue of Creative 
Computing. Thank you very much for a 
very fair and unbiased representation of 
our product. 

I noted your comment concerning the 
user's manual. Indeed the manual 
accompanying your printer was 
"preliminary." Quite often, because we 
demand that such high quality docu- 
mentation accompany our product, the 
time involved to produce such docu- 
mentation exceeds the introduction date 
for the product. Because there are occa- 
sions when the end-user receives only 
the preliminary manual, our policy is to 
mail, at no charge to the end-user, the 
final user manual when it becomes 



available. 

I am enclosing, for your inspection, 
the final user's manual for the Delta cur- 
rently being supplied with the printer. 
This manual is an example of Star's 
commitment to quality documentation; 
hopefully it is the best in the industry. 

That's quite a claim, but after looking 
through the final product, I must agree. 
It will be my pleasure to hold up the 
final documentation of the Delta- 10 as 
the standard to which all printer docu- 
mentation should aspire. Truly a super- 
lative job. 

Time for just one more response to a 
question from the mailbag: 

To Dwight Garner, of Wheaton, IL: 
The decision whether or not to take out 
a service contract is analogous to buying 
personal insurance. You can go without 
it, and then suddenly require a very 
costly repair. Or you can take out an 
extensive contract and never have a 
problem. 

There was a time when I would have 
recommended service contracts on print- 
ers without reservation, because they are 
the most likely component of any com- 
puter system to require repair. However, 
nowadays most quality printers can run 
for years without requiring a service call. 

Determine what your actual duty 



cycle is. Just how much hard copy do 
you actually require? As a rough rule of 
thumb, if you churn out an average of 
fewer than three pages a day, you prob- 
ably don't need a service contract. You 
aren't using your printer all that much. 

Instead, I would stress the routine 
preventive maintenance you can under- 
take yourself to keep your printer up and 
running. Keep the inside clean with an 
air bulb and brush. Make sure the paper 
path is free of torn bits of paper and pa- 
per dust. Keep moving parts well- 
lubricated (I keep a can of WD-40 
nearby). 

Talk to you -next month. ■ 

Firms Mentioned in this Column 

Datasouth Computer Corporation 
Box 240947 
Charlotte, NC 28224 
(704) 523-8500 

TTX Incorporated 
3420 East Third Ave. 
Foster City, CA 94404 
(415) 341-1300 

Extended Systems 
P.O. Box 4937 
Boise, ID 83711 
(208) 322-7163 



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CIRCLE 198 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



October 1 984 » Creative Computing 




lastmghtwfc exchanged letters with 

mom,then had a Party for 

Eleven people In Nine Different States 

and Onlyhadtoimsh One Glass- 



That's CompuServe, The 
Personal Communications 
Network For Every Computer 
Owner 

And it doesn't matter what kind 
of computer you own. You'll use 
CompuServe's Electronic Mail system 
(we call it Email™") to compose, edit and 
send letters to friends or business 
associates. The system delivers any 
number of messages to other users 
anywhere in North America. 



CompuServe's multi-channel CB 
simulator brings distant friends together 
and gets new friendships started. You 
can even use a scrambler if you have a 
secret you don't want to share. Special 
interest groups meet regularly to trade 
information on hardware, software and 
hobbies from photography to cooking 
and you can sell, swap and post personal 
notices on the bulletin board. 

There's all this and much more 
on the CompuServe Information Service. 
All you need is a computer, a modem, 



and CompuServe. CompuServe connects 
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CIRCLE 109 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



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TRS-80 

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Checking out Route 67 on the Tandy 
map, we see it leads to a tired switch, the 
Bio Detector program from Computer- 
ware, two kodak systems for photo- 
graphing CRT graphics, and a third 
short star-twinkle program. 

The Tired Switch 

You have just written some text with 
a word processing program, and you 
want to save it. So you type: 

S XYZ/SCR 

or something similar. But instead of the 
text being written to disk, you get this 
message: 

Write Protected Disk 

So of course you take the disk out of 
the drive to look at it, and of course 
there is no tab covering the write-protect 
notch, because you didn't put one there. 

So what happened? With a bit of 
detective work, you find you have been a 
little lazy. Instead of taking the disk 
completely out of the drive at the end of 
a computer session, you just opened the 
drive door, and pulled the disk out half 
an inch, so the data don't get scrambled 
when you turn off the TRS-80. 

(At least this is what we have all 
heard for years is supposed to happen, 
and all the manuals warn: "Do not place 
a diskette in the drive while you are 
turning the system on or off," or words 
to that effect. Do it often enough, 
though, and you'll have trouble booting 
up Basic, or your word processing pro- 
gram, or whatever is on the disk.) 

Leaving a disk partially out of the 
drive is a fairly common practice. We do 



Stephen B. Gray 

it often when we use one disk more than 
the others; we leave it in the drive 
because it is probably going to be used at 
the next session. 

There is a little microswitch inside the 
drive that senses whether the write-pro- 
tect notch is covered or not. Listen as 
you push a disk into the drive: the 



After several years, 
the computer has no 

way of telling the 

difference between a 

tired notch switch and 

a write-protect tab. 



microswitch clicks on as it detects the 
far end of the disk jacket; then clicks off 
as it drops into the notch (assuming 
there is no tab covering the write-protect 
notch). 

Now pull the disk forward half an 
inch; the microswitch clicks on, and it 
will stay on for hours, or maybe days, 
until you push the disk forward again. 

These microswitches are guaranteed 
by the manufacturer to operate may 
thousands of times without error. But 
just Figure out how many times you click 
that switch in a week. After several 
years, the write-protect switch is going 



to get a little tired, and if you insist in 
leaving it in the on position, it may just 
decide to stay that way. Which is why 
you get the Write Protected Disk mes- 
sage; the computer has no way of telling 
the difference between a tired notch 
switch in the on position and a write- 
protect tab. 

The next time you turn off your TRS- 
80 (or any other computer), take the 
disk all the way out of the drive first. 
Otherwise you may eventually have to 
take your machine to a Radio Shack 
Computer Center to have the micro- 
switch replaced. The current cost of that 
operation is $30. 

Bio Detector 

You've probably read or heard about 
bio feedback monitoring, how it can 
measure the stress you're feeling, and 
how you can use it to lower your stress 
level. 

Bio Detector from Computerware is a 
$34.95 combination of hardware and 
software that graphs your galvanic skin 
response on the screen of a 16K Color 
Computer. 

The hardware consists of a Velcro- 
mounted, adjustable skin sensor with sil- 
ver contacts, attached to a small 
"monitor box," which plugs into the joy- 
stick jack of your Color Computer. First 
you load the Biograf program from tape 
as you wrap the sensors around the first 
two fingers of one hand. 

Then you set four variables, which are 
displayed on the bottom of the screen. 
The Scope speed can be set to slow, me- 
dium, or fast. The Trace can be dis- 
played as a line or as dots, whichever 
you prefer. Audio can be turned off, or 
set to variable (a changing tone that gets 



October 1 984 < Creative Computing 



165 



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CIRCLE 160 ON READER SERVICE CARD 




Figure 1. This trace, on the Bio Detector display, shows a 
relaxed period on the left, and higher stress at right (from 
holding my breath.) 



Figure 2. The Anxiety Attack game is a real challenge; the 
higher sensitivity makes it almost impossible to relax enough to 
flatten the trace appreciably. 



higher as the trace gets higher) or fixed 
(a beep that sounds more often as the 
trace gets higher). Mode may be set to 
Bio (the bio feedback mode) or to AA 
(for the Anxiety Attack game). 

Although the manual dosen't mention 
it, you use the spacebar to stop the trace, 
so you can change any of the settings, 
which depend largely on personal pref- 
erence; I like a slow line-trace, with vari- 
able beep. 

How It Works 

Bio Detector measures skin resistance 
and converts this to an analog signal, 
shown on the screen in an elaborate and 
colorful display (Figure 1). According to 
the theory, the more stress, the higher 
the numbers sent to the computer. Bio 
Detector is said to "help you learn to 
lower your personal stress level, to 
observe your reaction to questions or 
other stimuli. . . It can also be used as a 
simple lie detector." 

As the plotting starts, you adjust the 
sensitivity control on the monitor box 
until the trace is near the middle of the 
screen, vertically. This is the most im- 
portant adjustment; too high or too low, 
and the trace flattens out. 

To check the operation of the Bio 
Detector, take a deep breath and hold it 
for as long as you can; this causes stress, 
and the trace on the screen should rise 
dramatically. 

According to the manual, bio feed- 
back means amplifying any function of 
your body, to make yourself aware of 
something you ordinarily might not be 
aware of. You could, for example, 
amplify your heartbeat, and then learn 
to speed it up, or slow it down, at will. 
The Bio Detector measures skin resis- 
tance, which is inversely proportional to 



body stress. The amount of stress it 
senses is displayed on the screen and 
heard as a changing tone, so that you 
can learn to lower (or raise?) your "per- 
sonal stress level." 

The manual claims that "bio feedback 
has been used to cure people with 
chronic headaches, ulcers, and many 
other stress-related problems. People 
with high stress jobs have learned to re- 
lax and deal with their work without as 
much tension." No suggestions are given 
on how to relax. 

Personally, I found that, with a little 
practice, I could lower the trace level a 
fair amount, but not always when I 
wanted to. 

The Bio Detector can be accessed from 
a Basic program, because the Color 
Computer sees it as a joystick. If the 
Detector is plugged into the right joy- 
stick jack, look at JOYSTK(O). A four- 
line Basic program is provided to let the 
computer look at the right joystick port 
and "make an appropriate tone." 

Lie Detector 

Put the skin sensor on another per- 
son's fingers, allow him some time to re- 
lax, then ask a question. According to 
the manual, "if the trace does not move 
up or down very much, the answer was 
probably the truth. If the trace moves 
about a half an inch or so, the person 
may not be telling the whole truth. If the 
traces moves up more than an inch the 
answer is probably not true at all." 

The manual continues with a dis- 
claimer, "Please remember that this is 
not guaranteed to produce 100% ac- 
curate results. You shouldn't take the 
responses of the person too seriously. 
(We don't want to cause any divorces.)" 
The magazine ad goes even further: 



"This is a toy. Results not admissible in 
court." 

Anxiety Attack Game 

In AA mode, the computer is much 
more sensitive to upward movements of 
the trace. The idea of the Anxiety At- 
tack game (Figure 2) is to get somebody 
to put on the sensor, then see if you can 
"get the person ... to react. Try asking 
how his car got that huge scratch in it, 
or make a funny face. (Tickling is not 
fair!) Do anything you can to make the 
trace go up." Anything? 

The manual suggests you "try this at 
your next party ... to see who can hold 
out the longest without making the 
screen flash"; flashing means the display 
turns on and off, alternating rapidly 
with a blank screen. Anxiety Attack 
"works especially well when there are a 
lot of people around. This is a good test 
to see if you really have learned stress 
control in the Bio Feedback mode." 

The stress level in Anxiety Attack is 
much more difficult to control than in 
Bio Feedback mode, because of the 
increased sensitivity. 

Those Color Photos 

The color photos illustrating the Bio 
Detector program were taken with Ko- 
dak's Instagraphic CRT Imaging Outfit, 
which makes instant color-print copies 
of images displayed on 12" or 13" CRT 
screens. 

The Instagraphic Outfit (Figure 3), 
introduced in 1983, consists of two basic 
parts: a modified Kodamatic Champ In- 
stant Camera with a close-up lens; and a 
Kodak Model 12 plastic CRT cone. Also 
included are two 10-exposure packages 
of film, a filter to provide "warmer" 
prints, and brackets for adapting a 35 mm 



October 1984 » Creative Computing 



167 



THE REAL 

'• Expect the unexpected 
*K the first time you experi- 
4^^\ t'nce Infocom's interactive 
^ fiction. Because you won't 
be booting up a computer game. 
You'll be stepping into a story. 

You'll find yourself at the center of 
an exciting world that continually 
challenges you with surprising 



mm E"2 B^ 




twists, unique 
characters 
(many of whom 
possess ex- 
traordinarily developed personalities) 
and original, logical, often hilarious 
puzzles. 

Communication is carried on just 
as it is in a book— in prose. And inter- 
action is easy— you type in full 
English sentences. 

But if you think getting inside a 

I story is a pretty neat trick, 
just try getting out. 
The most remarkable 
thing about Infocom's inter- 
active fiction is that you become 
almost inextricably involved with 
it. That's not our opinion— it's the 
testimony of our customers. 
They tell us their pulse rates 
have skyrocketed and their 
palms have sweated as they've L 
striven to solve the mysteries of 
our tales. And even when they've 
paused in the course of their adven- 
tures to attend to their everyday 1 
lives, their minds have continued to 
churn away at 
J what the next 
° step should 
J be, how to 
alter strategy, where the ultimate 
solution lies. 

Obsessions? Yes, but magnificent 
ones. For the first time, you can be 
more than a passive reader— you can 
become the story's main character 
and driving force. You can shape its 

I course of events by what you 
choose to do. And you enjoy 
enormous freedom in your 
choice of actions— you have 






IS GETTING OUT. 



hundreds, even thousands of alterna- 
tives at every step. In fact, an Infocom 
interactive story is roughly the 
hhh ■■■■ length of a short 

I novel in content, 
ft^J but because you 

I take an active 
role in the plot, your adven- 
ture can last for weeks and 
months. (Or longer. 
Frankly, some folks find 
being inside our stories 
so fascinating, they 
just don't seem to 
want to get out.) 
As hard as get- 
ting out may be, 
though, we've 
made it easy 
for everyone 
to get into 
Infocom's 
interactive 
fiction. 



B 









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We write 
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So find out what it's like to get 
inside a story. Get one from 
1 1nfocom. Because with 
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I there's room for you on 
every disk. 

Ease into interactive fiction 
with our Can't-Lose Sampler Offer! 
Watch for Infocom's new sampler 
disk at your favorite dealer— and get 
your first taste of interactive fiction 
for just $7.95 (suggested retail 
price). You've got nothing to lose 
(in fact, you can make a shiny new 
nickel in the bargain) because your 
Infocom sampler disk even comes 



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the purchase of your first complete 
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CIRCLE 147 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



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Our newest, and fastest, Spinwriter® 
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For one thing the Spinwriter 8850 
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Of course you can also change either 



h> 



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With large, legible alphanumeric 
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And make it 
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The first choice of IBM PC 
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The Spinwriter printer was the first 
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single lens reflex camera to the cone. 

Setting up the Instagraphic is simple: 
load the camara; mount it on the cone; 
position the cone against the face of your 
monitor or TV screen; and hold down 
the shutter release until you hear a click. 
The click is from the camera's automatic 
exposure control, which adjusts the 
exposure time for screen brightness. 

Because tube face sizes and configura- 
tions vary, the cone is designed to fit 
against the frame around the tube, or 
against the cabinet. Four rubber bump- 
ers are mounted on the corners of the 
cone-flange face, to provide a nonslip 
contact between the cone and the CRT 
frame, and to space the cone flange away 
from the CRT frame or cabinet. 

The outfit also includes foam strips 
for creating a light baffle between the 
cone flange and CRT frame. However, 
the strips are useful only if the room 
lights are to be left on while the CRT 
screen is photographed. 

With only the bumpers applied to the 
cone flange, the camera will record the 
full area of a 12" (diagonal) CRT With 
a 13" CRT, the cone will slightly crop 
the bowed sides of the CRT face; to 
show the full screen, spacer pads can be 
added to move the camera back. For the 
13" screen of Radio Shack's color TV, 
four spacers were added under each 
bumper. 

After a few trial exposures, the 
Instagrahic Outfit is easy to use. Once 
you've figured out just where to place 
the cone, all you do is push the button, 
release it when you hear the click, and 
wait for the color print to emerge from 
the camera. The 12-page manual pro- 
vides plenty of detail on positioning the 
cone, optimizing focus, adjusting expo- 
sure, and using a 35mm camera. 

According to the press release, 
"black-and-white duplicates of the color 
prints can be made with any high grade 
office copying machine for inclusion in 
written reports ." 

The suggested list price of the outfit is 
$190, although it can be bought in New 
York for $168, from the industrial di- 
vision of one of the large camera stores. 

Second-Generation Imager 

Offering a selection of cones in dif- 
ferent sizes, Kodak's second-generation 
Instagraphic CRT "print imager" was 
announced in May 1984. The modular 
system offers cones in 9", 12", 13", and 
19" sizes. 

The new print imager (Figure 4, fore- 
ground) has four basic components: a 
new K<xlak Instagraphic camera back, 
box-shaped "print module," CRT cone, 
and cone "adapter." The background 
shows the four adapters, which slide into 
the cone, and are held in place with a 




Figure 3. Kodak 's Instagraphic CR T 
Imaging Outfit provides an inexpensive 
way to take photos of computer displays. 

pair of metal snap fasteners. 

A bracket is provided for using a 35 
mm SI.R camera in place of the camera 
back and print module. A filter-holder is 
also provided, in case the user wants to 
color-balance the phosphors of some 
CRTs. 

The camera back of the new print 
imager is "designed for professional 
use," according to the press release. The 
new back and print module will be fea- 
tured in a professional product later in 
1984. The print module includes the 
shutter and a variable focus lens, and 
partially corrects for screen distortion. 

The new print imager has no auto- 
matic focus control, so "one or two test 
exposures may be required to arrive at 
the best exposure for the brightness level 
of the particular CRT." 

A close look at the photographs shows 
three words under the Kodak logo on 
the camera back and cone: Made in 
Germany. 

Exact list prices have not been estab- 
lished at this writing, but the basic 
imager will be less than $300, and the 
cone adapters will be less than $40 each. 
The original outfit will continue to be 
available. 

There are several other camera-and- 
cone systems for photographing CRT 
graphics, but none I've seen is as 
inexpensive as the Kodak Instagraphic 
printmakers. 

Short program 51: Twinkle 3 

From Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 
Tammy Dunlop sent a CoCo version of 
the twinkle program (Nov. 1983, p. 
330), with this letter: 

"I finally have gone out and bought 
myself a TP-10 printer for my Color 
Computer. I'm not fussy on the thermal 
paper, but for the price I am willing to 
put up with it till I can afford something 
better. 

"The program is one I thought of 
while allowing my mind to wander off 
work the other day. It uses an array 



Figure 4. The new Instagraphic print 
imager provides four cone adapters of 
different sizes, to fit CRTs from 9" to 
19". 

setup to remember the pixel positions, 
and scanning through it gives the twin- 
kling effect, along with a random selec- 
tion of pixels on the screen that keeps 
changing. If you have a good imagina- 
tion (like the old astronomers) you may 
see some of the constellations form be- 
fore your eyes." 

Run the program in Listing I on a 
Color Computer and 20 pixels will ap- 
pear at random locations on the screen, 
in random colors. As soon as the 20th 
one appears, the stars — one by one — are 
randomly turned off and then right back 
on again, accompanied by a rapid, ran- 
dom note melody that may drive you 
bonkers within minutes. Each star dis- 
appears after several minutes (and sev- 
eral dozen twinkles; actually, 60 
twinkles), to be replaced by another star 
elsewhere on the screen. 

Tammy's rims include: "Twinkle 
Twinkle, for TRS-80 CoCo 16K Basic 
The larger the number for pixfi , the 
more stars and the slower they twinkle. 



Listing I. 

30 CLS 

32 DIM AX(60) , AY(60) , AZ(60) 

34 AP»1 

36 PIXEL»20 

38 TT»0 

40 RESET( AX( AP) , AY( AP)l 

50 X»RN0(62): AX(AP)"X 

52 Y»RNO(30)i AY(AP)»Y 

54 Z»RND(e): AX(AP)»Z 

56 SET( X,Y,Z) 

60 AP»AP+1 

65 IF AP>PIXEL THEN GOSUB 90 

70 IF 1T01 THEN 80 

71 FOR L00P-1 TO 4 

72 FOR TN-1 TO PIXEL 

73 S»RNO( 100)^100 

74 RESETt AX(TW) ,AY(TW) ) 

75 SOUND 8,1 

76 SET( AX(TH) , AY(TW) , AZ(TW) ) 

78 NEXT TN 

79 NEXT LOOP 

80 GOTO 40 

90 AP=1 : TT"1 
92 RETURN 



October 1 984 ' Creative Computing 



171 



SINCLAIR and TIMEX SINCLAIR 

programming made easy! 



rtNG ACQUAINTED 

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HOW TO ORDER: 

Send check or money order for $9.95" per book, plus $2.00 postage and 
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orders accepted include Visa. MC or Amex card number, exp date, 
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'CA N] NY State residents add applicable sales tax Outside USA add $3 00 pet ordet 

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TRS80C IBMPC VIC20 TI99 



TRS-80 



LOOP=l to 3 gives three flashes to 
each star before going on to pick another 
random star from the many on the 
screen. Maximum number of stars is 60, 
due to size of arrays. Line 34: position in 
array. Line 36: number of stars; max 60. 
Line 38: twinkle test. Line 90: Subrou- 
tine^ — set to twinkle, and reset array 
pointer." 

Lines 50-56 set pixels at random loca- 
tions on the screen in random colors. 
Lines 60-65 count the number of pixels; 
if there are fewer than 20 (or whatever 
number line 36 is set to), line 70 jumps 
the program to line 80, which jumps 
back to line" 40, to keep on setting pixels. 

If the pixel count goes over 20, line 65 
calls the subroutine in lines 90-92, which 
resets the pixel counter to one, and sets 
TT to one. Now lines 71-79 come into 
play, to turn off — and right back 
on — each of the 20 pixels, three times 
each, in rotation as determined by their 
locations in the arrays. Also, a random 
melody is created by lines 73 and 75. 

After the third off/on go-around (60 
twinkles' worth, or three loops times 20, 
or LOOP*TW), the program jumps 
back to line 40, to turn off a pixel for 
keeps. A new pixel is turned on (to pro- 
vide a little variety), and the sequence 
repeats. 

In other words, after the program has 
reached line 79, a pixel is turned off 
permanently, and a new one is set by line 
56 every three twinkles. To prove this, 
add: 

58 PRINT @ 0, X;Y;Z 

and watch the three numbers change 
rapidly at first until 20 pixels are set, 
then change only after each round of 
three twinkles. 

The program can be adapted for a 
TRS-80 Model I/I 1 1/4 by dropping the 
Z or AZ part from lines 32, 56, and 76; 
dropping lines 54, 73, and 75; changing 
the 62 in line 50 to 127; and the 30 in 
line 52 to 47. The "twinkle" will be 
faster than on the CoCo; these stars 
don't actually turn completely off, as 
they do in color. 

The TRS-80 Model 4 has the same 
sound statement as the CoCo, so you 
can leave in lines 73 and 75 if you 
have a 4. ■ 

Finns Mentioned in this Column: 

Computerware 

4403 Manchester Ave., Suite 102 

Encinitas, CA 92024 

(619)436-3512 

Kodak Instagraphic CRT Imaging 

Outfit 

Box 82627 

St. Paul, MN 55182 

(716)458-1000 



/ 



October 1984 « Creative Computing 







I 



A 






How long is an idea? 



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When you introduce your IBM X 
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Besides bringing the power, speed 
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COMMODORE 



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LIGHT PEN $29 75 

5 Slot Expansion 64 $54 OO 

64 Writ* NOW $39 OO 

64 Mail NOW $29 00 

2 j Writs NOW $29 OO 

64 Keypad (29 OO 

Universal Cm*. Int $29 75 

Printer utility $19 75 

6 Slot Eapaniion *79 95 

3 Slot Eapantton 624 95 

SPINNAKER 64 

KINDERCOMP O/R S21 75 

STORY MACH ROM $24 75 

FACE MAKER D/R $24 75 

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FRACTION F ROM $24.75 

KIDS ON KEYS $24 75 

MITEVMO 78.95 

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TURTLE TUTOR . . . •22.75 
TURTLE TRAINER $22 75 
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GRIDRUNNER $19 75 

ATTACK OF MC $22 75 

HESWRITER $28 75 

OMNI WRITER $45 75 

TYPE N WRITER •24.75 
PAINT BRUSH $22 7 5 

BENJI $25 75 

HOME MANAGER $28 75 
TIME MONEY MG R $44 75 
OMNICALC (33 75 

SWORD POINT $19 95 

HES MODEM $49 95 

M MULTIPLAN $65 75 



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TAXAN 

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105 AMBER $12500 

2 10 RGB COMPOSITE $269.00 

400 RGB MEDRES $295 00 

410 RGB HI RES $349 00 

420 RGB HI RES (IBM) $475 00 

121 GREEN $14500 

122 AMBER $149 00 

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ZVM123G GREEN $85.00 

ZUM 124IBM-PC $129 00 

ZUM COLOR $275 00 

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ZUM 135 RGB $449 00 

ZUM 136 $589 00 



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FACE MAKER R $24 75 

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DATA PERFECT $89 75 

FILE MANAGER $69 75 

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84 $959 00 



92 



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CALL TOLL FREE 

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P.O. Box 5088 
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APO. FPO. and inter- 
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CIRCLE 159 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



■ 



New products from Teleram, Gavilan, Sharp 
and Portable Computer Support Group 



L^^l. 



tit 



Nob 
Computing 




This month in our Notebook Comput- 
ing column we take a look at several new 
computers, some new peripherals, soft- 
ware and books, as well as the fate of 
some previous entries in the field. 

Teleram and Dulmont: 
A New Team 

Teleram, makers of the T3000 (see 
Creative Computing. Jan. 1984) has 
introduced three new family members, 
the T3500, T4000, and T5000. The 
T3500 is billed as an office workstation. 
It consists of an expansion chassis, 12" 
video monitor, and up to four floppy 
disk drives and can be used with any of 
the Teleram portable computers. The 
CRT displays 24 lines of 80 characters. 

The main difference between the three 
computers is the size of the display. All 
have 80 characters with the T3000 hav- 
ing four lines; the T4000, eight lines; and 
the T5000, 16 lines. All three machines 
have 64K of dynamic RAM, 128K of 
bubble memory (expandable to 256K), 
RS-232 port, acoustic coupler, and AC 
charger. They run CP/M and include 
word processing and communications 
software. 

In addition, Teleram has become the 
U.S. distributor for the Australian-made 
Dulmont Magnum notebook portable 
computer. The Magnum is available with 
either an 8- or 16-line LCD screen. It is 
based on the 16-bit 80186 mpu and has 
128K of RAM (expandable to 256K), 
dual (external) V/ 4 " floppy disks (720K 
capacity), one parallel and two serial 
ports, a real-time clock, and a 74-key 
full stroke keyboard. It runs MS-DOS 
and includes ROM-based word process- 
ing, spreadsheet, and planning/diary 
software as well as Basic. 



David H. Ahl 



Gavilan — Revisited 

Although the Gavilan was announced 
in June of 1983 at NCC, quantity deliv- 
eries did not begin until June 1984. We 
were told there were some bugs to be 
worked out, some of which resulted in 
basic changes to the product itself. The 
computer is based on a 16-bit mpu, the 
8088. The basic Gavilan has 96K and a 
16-line, 80-character display. 

The SC model has 64K and an 8-line 
display. Memory is expandable to 160K 
internally and 288K with a clip-on mod- 
ule. The machine has a double-sided 
V/ x " floppy disk drive with quad density 
for a total formatted capacity of 360K. 
In addition to a standard keyboard, the 
machine has a touch panel above the 
keyboard, which Gavilan refers to as a 
"solid state mouse." 

The machine measures 1 1.4" x 1 1.4" x 
2.7" and weighs 9 lbs. The internal 
NiCad battery pack is good for eight 
hours of use and can be recharged to 
80% of capacity in just one hour. 

A snap-on thermal printer adds 4.9" 
to the depth and weighs five pounds. It 
can print characters or graphics on ei- 
ther thermal or plain paper. 

The operating system is MS-DOS and 
currently-available software includes 
WordStar, SuperCalc 2. Acculink. 
PFS.File. PFS.Report. Basic, Pascal, C, 
and Macro, with many additional pack- 
ages promised by the end of 1984. 

Price of the Gavilan is $3995; the SC 
model is $2995; and the printer $985, 
with software packages ranging from 
$125 to $300. 



Departures From the Ranks 

As we were putting together our 
annual computer Buyer's Guide, we were 
struck by the number of manufacturers 
of notebook portables that we had in our 
roundup in January that are no longer 
on the scene. Toshiba withdrew the 
T100 from the U.S. market and two 
other Japanese manufacturers. Canon 
and Casio, never really promoted their 
machines here in a major way. 

Xerox dropped the 1800 (a machine 
made by Sunrise) altogether, while 
Convergent Technologies suspended 
production of the Workslate until cur- 
rent inventories are cleared. 
MicroOffice, looking for OEMs for their 
Road Runner, appears to be looking 
still, and, judging from the announced 
peripherals for the CC-40 that are not 
yet available, TI may be having some 
second thoughts about that unit. 

That means that in less than nine 
months, five to seven systems have bit- 
ten the dust. On the other hand, in the 
same time period, at least eight new sys- 
tems have been announced. Hence, from 
the consumer point of view, you have 
more choice than ever before. Neverthe- 
less, it is probably more important than 
ever to make a wise choice given the rap- 
idly changing fortunes in this volatile 
market. 

Micro Floppy Drive and New 
Software for PC-5000 

Sharp has introduced a battery- 
powered 3'/ 2 " micro floppy disk drive 
for the PC-5000 portable computer. The 
drive uses the standard Sony disk and 
records double density (40 tracks) on 
both sides for a total formatted capacity 
of 360K. 



176 



October 1 984 * Creative Computing 



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The Dulmont Magnum notebook portable computer. 



The unit measures 5.5" x 9.2* x 2.6" 
and weighs 6.6 lbs. It can be powered by 
either a rechargeable lead battery (6V) 
or an AC adaptor. The design is said to 
minimize battery drain when the drive is 
not in use. The PC- 5000 can interface 
with one or two disk drives (micro, mini, 
or one of each). 

Sharp also introduced a 256K mem- 
ory expansion cartridge for the PC- 5000. 
The cartridge plugs into Slot 1 on the 
bottom of the computer and expands the 
internal 64K to 320K. 

A software package designed by 
Diversified Computer Systems of Boul- 
der, CO and sold by Sharp, converts the 
PC-5000 into a DEC VT102 terminal for 
use with DEC or other mini or main- 
frame computers. 

Sharp is in the process of testing a 
prototype Unix system on the PC-5000. 
According to Frank Barbosa of Sharp's 
System Division, "If test marketing 
shows an interest, we would proceed 
next to an EPROM system for added 
speed and testing toward development of 
a ROM-based system." 

New Packages from PCSG 

We have reviewed several packages 
from the Portable Computer Support 
Group for the Model 100 and have been 
generally impressed with their quality. 
While we have not seen these new pack- 
ages, they sound interesting. 

Type+ transforms the Model 100 into 
an electronic memory typewriter. You 
see the last line on the screen as it 
appears on paper, as a virtual window. 
You can set the screen view area from an 
entire line to a single word to immediate 
print as you desire. 

Type+ provides word processing fea- 
tures such as tab, automatic centering, 
set margins, underline, and boldface. 
You can also store names and addresses, 
phrases, or paragraphs, and recall them 
with a single function key. Price is $69.95. 



The Gavilan mobile computer features a built-in W 2 " disk drive. 



Tutor-/- is a program to teach touch 
typing and consists of 30 lessons which 
present exercises at graded speed. A nice 
feature of the program is the ability to 
set your own typing speed and learning 
pace. It also has a game option which 
challenges you to save the earth from 
destruction by typing faster and more 
accurately. Price is $49.95. 

Disk-h is a program which allows you 
to use the disk storage on your Apple, 



PCSG Disk + transfers 

files between a 

Model 100 and 

desktop system. 



IBM PC, TRS-80, or CP/M-compatible 
computer to store and retrieve disk files 
with a single function key. The program 
utilizes the RS-232 port with a null 
modem cable. Price is $69.95. 

Ten key + is a program for business 
analysis. It performs strategic business 
"what if?" calculations, calculates amor- 
tization schedules, solves for any of 12 
variables in financial formulae, and gen- 
erates breakeven analyses, NPV, com- 
pound interest, and many other common 
business calculations. Price is $59.95. 

PCSG has a free 14-page catalog 
which describes these products and sev- 
eral others in detail. 

New Books 

Several excellent new books about the 
Model 100 (and NEC 8201) have 
recently appeared. The Simon & 
Schuster Guide to The TRS-80 Model 
100 by Danny Goodman has ten chap- 
ters divided into three main parts. The 
first part has a general introduction to | 



notebook machines followed by a com- 
prehensive comparison of the Model 100 
and NEC 8201. The two chapters in 
Part II cover the nuts and bolts of the 
hardware and interfacing to the outside 
world (one of the shallower chapters of 
the book). Part III, Using Model 100 
Software, makes up the last six chapters. 

Many authors of books about the 
Model 100 seem to assume their readers 
have not read the manual and simply 
repeat the contents in different words. 
Fortunately, Danny doesn't slip into this 
trap and, in most cases, takes the reader 
one or two steps beyond the manual. On 
the other hand, some sections stop short 
of being truly useful. For example, 
Danny whets your appetite for transfer- 
ring text files from the Model 100 to an- 
other computer and discusses the pit- 
falls, but doesn't really tell how to do it. 

Nevertheless, in the 216 pages, you'll 
probably find several things that will jus- 
tify the $9.95 expenditure. ■ 



Manufacturers Mentioned 
in this Column: 

Teleram Communications Corp. 
2 Corporate Park Dr. 
White Plains, NJ 10604 
(914) 694-9270 

Gavilan Computer Corp. 
P.O. Box 5004 
Campbell, CA 95008 
(408) 379-8000 

Sharp Electronics Corp. 
10 Sharp Plaza 
Paramus, NJ 07652 
(201)265-5600 

Portable Computer Support Group 
1 1035 Harry Hines Blvd. 
Dallas. TX 75229 
(214) 351-0564 



October 1984 « Creative Computing 



177 




This month young Mr. Linzmayer and 
I will divide the honors of hosting the 
Apple Cart. I will bring you up to date on 
some Macintosh news, and then Owen 
will look at an exciting number of new 
products for the 11+ and He. 

While I have long used an Apple 11 + 
as a word processor and to run graphics 
and game programs, I have never been 
an "Apple to the core" person. Rather I 
have remained an objective admirer. The 
last time 1 wrote an Apple Cart (July 
1983), 1 reported on Apple's User Group 
Conference for IAC brass, where the He 
was introduced. I was impressed. I called 
the conference "a gracious and thoughtful 
christening for the new machine." But I 
saw the He as II with lower case, an 
improved keyboard, and a really low chip 
count. It was no Apple IV. 

What really impressed me at the time 
was the Lisa. It had some incredible ca- 
pabilities, though it took about $10,000 to 
make them your own. I wondered if that 
technology would or could ever appear in 
a relatively inexpensive machine. 

Mac: I'm A Believer 

Well it took another year, but finally 
the Macintosh appeared. And I was swiftly 
converted from an ardent admirer to a 
true believer. In the time since my review 
of the Macintosh computer (July 1984), I 
have grown to know and love the machine. 
Sure, I'm still waiting for a writer's word 
processor, with virtual memory storage 
and things like word counts and print 
spoolers, but quality Mac software has 
begun to appear, along with peripheral 
upgrades that give it formidable powers. 

Second Microfloppy Drive 

The Mac is ahead of the schedule I had 
set for it in my review. Second drives, for 



John J. Anderson 
and Owen Linzmayer 

example, have now begun shipping in 
quantity. I walked into my local computer 
store a few weeks ago and simply walked 
out with one (I had to pay for it, of 
course). What a difference it has made in 
file handling! 

Now data files can reside on one disk, 
while all program and utility files reside 
on a system master. Tiresome disk swaps 
are eliminated completely, and psycholo- 
gically there is a lot more space to stretch 
out in. Though $495 seems a little steep 
for a unit that OEMs for so much less, it 
is well worth it in time saved and annoyance 
avoided. 

Tecmar Mac Drive 

Of course there is another peripheral 
that can even beat out a second floppy 
drive for convenience— a hard disk. I 
have had a Tecmar Mac Drive hooked 
up for the last few days, and it proves that 
a hard disk drive is a natural for the Mac- 
intosh. With a 5 meg cartridge online, 
there is more than enough breathing room. 
And working with the hard disk is just 
like working with any other disk — it appears 
as a Mac Drive icon on your desktop. 

For my purposes, I would have been 
happier with the 10 meg fixed disk model, 
but that is a matter of taste. A removable 
cartridge increases convenience, security, 
and versatility. On the other hand, the 
user is "constrained" to 5 meg hard disk 
access. I would much rather trade disk 
space for cartridge portability. 

Not everything about the Tecmar drive 
is ideal, but very few of the disadvantages 
are the fault of Tecmar. Rather, it is the 



Macintosh itself and protected software 
that make the Mac Drive less terrific than 
it could be. 

Because of the internal architecture of 
the Mac, you can't boot directly from 
hard disk. That means that you must always 
begin with a system floppy in the Mac's 
internal drive. Once the custom System 
Folder is installed, you can remove the 
system floppy and insert a data disk. But 
every session must begin with a boot from 
the internal drive. 

Then there is the question of protected 
software— a question that has haunted 
hard disk owners since well before the 
Macintosh came on the scene. If a piece 
of software is protected, it cannot be trans- 
ferred to hard disk, so it must be run from 
a floppy drive. In many if not most cases, 
the program floppy must remain in the 
drive during use as well. 

The result of this is that many important 
applications, including database and spread- 
sheet programs, are not compatible with 
a hard disk drive. Oh woe. If only those 
applications were copyable. 

When the Mac first appeared, word 
had it that most applications, like MacPaint 
and MacWrite, would be unprotected. 
Consumers rejoiced. How considerate, 
enlightened, and generous of Macintosh 
programmers, to realize the need to copy 
programs for personal use. All your heavy 
duty applications would be able to reside 
entirely on hard disk. You wouldn't need 
an entire library of applications disks at 
hand at all times. 

Then the debugged version of Multiplun 
showed up, and it was protected. Don't 
waste time trying to copy it to hard disk. 
You'll get the icon to transfer, all right. 
But you'll be asked to insert the system 
master disk upon execution of the icon. 
Soon other packages started to come in. 



178 



October 1 984 c Creative Computing 



(MfflMMta 



ProModem 1200A Apple Card Pack 



It's the best 300/1200 baud 212A 
telephone modem for your 
Apple II, II + , and He. Best' 
because it's the easiest to install 
and use, provides more useful 
modem features for your money, 
and lets you add software 
capabilities as your needs grow. 

We really do mean easy. Just plug 
the ProModem Card Pack into 
any expansion slot and connect 
the telephone cord. Onboard 
intelligent software in ROM 
includes a simple but powerful 
terminal program. With a few 
keystrokes, you'll be "on line" 
and communicating. 

ProModem 1200A offers you 
the best price-to-performance 
modem available with Auto- 
Answer and Auto-Dial, Program- 
mable Intelligent Dialing, Built-in 
Speaker with Volume Control, 
Help Commands, Extensive 
Diagnostics, and more. 

And when you need more 
sophisticated capabilities like 
Terminal Emulation, you're all set. 



The 1 200A is fully Hayes compati- 
ble. You'll be able to use most of 
the Apple II communications 
programs available. 



PRICE COMPARISON 

PROMETHEUS 

(1) ProModem 1200A Apple 
Card Pack, complete with 
onboard software and 
all necessary hardware 

List Price $449 

HAYES 

(1) Smartmodem 1200 

"standalone modem 

(2) Serial Card 

(3) RS-232C Cable 

(4) Communications Software 

Total List Price: $957 






The "Help" Screen and Auto 
redial if busy' functions make the 
1 200A convenient to use. The 
second phone jack for the tele- 
phone handset allows switching 
from voice to data. You get all of 
this, ready to use, complete with 
easy to understand documenta- 
tion, and a telephone cord for 
only S449. 

See your local dealer for a 
demonstration. He'll show why 
ProModem 1200A is your best 
connection. 



Prometheus Products, Inc. 
45277 Fremont Blvd. 
Fremont, CA 94538 
(415)490-2370 










rr^. * n 



CIRCLE 211 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



Apple 



each and every one protected against 
copying. 

As it turns out, MacPaint and MacWrite 
are about the only two Macintosh packages 
that aren't protected. What about all those 
promises, folks? 

Well, despite the drawbacks, a hard 
disk still has a place alongside the Mac. I 
tried hard to get things to screw up, but 
couldn't manage to do any real damage. 
It was fun trying to get the Mac to try to 
eject the hard disk— but it never caused 
any harm. Guess the people at Tecmar 
thought of that. 

Answer the MacPhone 

Another neat object that recently ap- 
peared at the lab is the MacPhone, a 
hardware/software system that combines 
a telephone with Macintosh software that 
will autodial, keep a personal "phone book," 
monitor charges, log all calls, even keep 
an updated calendar. You can type and 
print messages, print out phone book logs, 
and use the Mac's internal sound system 
to dial numbers right out of your directory. 

The MacPhone bills itself as "a unique 
concept in telecommunications," a state- 
ment that sent me excitedly looking through 
the box for a modem cable. Such is not 
the case. If your definition of telecom- 
munications is talking on the phone, you 
will have greater enthusiasm for the 
MacPhone than I did. If. in fact, the 
product did come with a built-in modem 
and telecommunications software, it would 
be a sure winner— combining voice and 
telecommunications into one integral 
system. Perhaps this is on the way from 
maker Intermatrix. 

Mac on MAUG 

While we're on the topic of telecommuni- 
cations, I'd like to take the opportunity to 
thank Dennis Brothers of MAUG (PCS- 
51), the Apple user's group on Compu- 
Serve on behalf of Macintosh owners 
everywhere. Dennis offered the first full- 
featured tele-communications program 
for the Mac, written in Microsoft Basic. 



It has gome through many revisions and 
in recent incarnations allows not only text 
uploads and downloads, but automatic 
formatting of text into MacWrite format 
and transmission as well as decoding of 
binary MacPaint files. 

Dennis did something so "unusual" with 
his terminal program that even Time 
magazine took notice. He posted it in a 
MAUG database on CompuServe so that 
anybody could download it. Sure, the 
connect time will cost you. but that's it. 
He didn't even invite "donations." 

Thanks. Dennis, for a wonderful pro- 
gram, and an exemplary attitude. You 
helped get Creative Computings Macin- 
tosh online and communicating with its 
own special interest group (PCS-22). And 
thanks for fielding all my dumb questions 
along the way. 

Well I could go on and on, but Owen 
wants to look at some hardware and 
software for the Apple II series, so I'd 
better wrap up. Take it away, Owen! 

ComputerEyes 

You can often evaluate a new product 
simply by noting the decline in general 
productivity of our editorial staff. When 
we get something really exciting for review, 
a crowd usually gathers to see what's up. 
The longer a new product can hold the 
attention of the onlookers, the higher the 
marks the product gets on our preliminary 
rating scale. 

It did not lake long for a group to 
gather 'round the old 11+ this morning 
after I set up the Digital Vision Computer- 
Eyes video acquisition system. With Com- 
puterEyes installed, the Apple can read 
any standard video signal, as from a video 
tape recorder, and convert the picture to 
a black and white digitized computer 
display. 

ComputerEyes is a small (4" x 4" x 
1.75") black box that connects to the Apple 
16-pin game I/O socket. The RCA phone 
jack on the back of the box is where the 
standard video signals enter the Computer- 
Eyes system. 




ComputerEyes (above/ 
digitizes standard video 
signals (right). 



180 



Any video device that outputs NTSC 
video or standard non-interlaced industrial 
video may be used with ComputerEyes. 
This includes video tape recorders (Beta 
and VHS), disc players, and those nifty 
portable cameras. For our review, we used 
an Olympus VHS tape deck with ac- 
companying hand-held camera. 

Supplied with the ComputerEyes hard- 
ware is a single disk which contains the 
acquisition program. Executive. This soft- 
ware allows you to adjust the sync of the 
video source and computer, capture normal 
and gray-scale images, and save/load these 
images to/from disk. Operation of Com- 
puterEyes is as simple as point and shoot. 
Once you have the image from the video 
source that you want to capture, all you 
do is press the N key to get a normal high- 
contrast image. If you use the gray-scale 
option, eight different images are taken 
and superimposed upon one another. 

Without writing your own applications, 
all you can do with Executive is view the 
digitized images on the computer screen. 
Digital Vision President, David Pratt, 
explains that they "wanted to draw the 
line between providing the acquisition and 
the application software" because the pos- 
sible uses for ComputerEyes are infinite. 

"Many applications are obvious. Others 
are bound to surface, once the product is 
in the hands of the creative members of 
the personal computer community" says 
Mr. Pratt. 

ComputerEyes comes with excellent 
documentation. The 27-page instruction 
manual covers everything from set-up to 
theory of operation. ComputerEyes sells 
for $350 with a black and white video 
camera, or $130 sans the camera. 

Time-Trax 

Is your desk cluttered with scraps of 
paper with important appointments and 
dates frantically scrawled on them? If so, 
Time-Trax may be for you. Manufactured 
by Creative Peripherals Unlimited (CPU), 
the $99.95 Time-Trax package consists of 
a time and date oriented calendar program 
and a clock module that plugs into the 
Apple internal 16-pin game I/O socket. 

Installation of the Time-Trax clock 
module, a small 1" x 2" circuit board, is 
simple. The module is transparent to soft- 
ware that reads the joystick and paddle 
positions, but can be read by your own 
Basic and machine language programs. 
Complete directions for incorporating the 
clock functions into your code are given 
in the documentation. 

Time-Trax is a menu-driven time man- 
agement system. The software supplied 
can monitor several peoples' appointments, 
errands, holidays, tasks, etc. As the primary 
user, you can add/review entries, search 
for entries using a target word, and examine 
the calendar. The obvious question arises. 



October 1 984 " Creative Computing 



"can I justify $100 for a computerized 
appointment book?" That depends. 

Time-Trax offers several features no 
conventional appointment book can match. 
Using a printer, it can provide you with a 
hard-copy to take with you wherever you 
go. Time-Trax can also be programmed 
to give you advance notice of an upcoming 
event. When you miss an event, Time- 
Trax brings it to your attention. 

The clock module is inserted into the 
16-pin game socket found on all 48K Apple 
II computers except the He. To initialize 
the Time-Trax module, you set the time, | 
date, and year using the boot disk. Once 
set, you can "write-protect" the clock via 
a switch on the circuit board. The module 
gets its power from two AA alkaline 
batteries which mount inside the Apple 
case. CPU claims that the batteries can 
provide up to two years of uninterrupted 
power. 

Voice Box III 

^ The Voice Box III from The Alien 
Group of NYC is designed for use with 
Apple II and He computers and comes 
complete with a small controller card, 
demo disk, external 3.5" speaker, and docu- 
mentation-all for $130 retail. 

Installation of the unit is simple. The 
Voice Box HI controller card slips intr 
expansion slot 3, and the voice output 
can be routed to the internal Apple speaker, 
the supplied external speaker, or both. 
Using the voice driver programs on the 
demo disk, you can enter regular English 
text and have the computer speak exactly 
what is typed. These programs may be 
easily transferred to another disk for custom 
use. 

Like all voice synthesizers we have tried 
over the years, the computer voice of the 
Voice Box III takes some getting used to. 
The Voice Box HI utilizes the new SSI 
263 speech chip which generates more 
natural speech than earlier phoneme syn- 
thesizers using the popular SC-01 or TMS 
5200 chips. As is typical of most commercial 
voice synthesizers, some English words 
must be spelled differently so that the 
Voice Box HI can pronounce them cor- 
rectly. 

The Voice Box III offers several in- 
teresting features not found on all voice 
generators. For instance, you can easily 
switch between male and female voices. 
Instant sex change! Also, the computer 
can be set to automatically add intonation 
to speech, or you can manually add 
intonation by inserting numbers into the 
text to be spoken. 

Other options include pauses between 
words, the speed of voice, and the volume. 
If it is flexibility that you are looking for, 
Voice Box III offers it, but you must be 
prepared to spend a lot of time manually 
fixing the text to get the computer to 



- | Apple 

speak in a perfectly comprehensible voice. 

■ 

Firms Mentioned In This Column 

The Alien Group 
27 W. 23rd St. 
New York, NY 10010 
(212)741-1770 

Creative Peripherals Unlimited 
22952 Alcalde. Suite 160 
Laguna Hills. CA 92653 
(800)854-8021 



Digital Vision. Inc. 
14 Oak St.. Suite 2 
Needham. MA 02192 
(617) 444-9040 

Intermatrix 

5547 Satsuma Ave. 

North Hollywood, CA 91601 

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October 1 984 ■ Creative Computing 



OINK WELL SYSTEMS, MM 'A I'm for Your Thoughts" 

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Hi 




181 



Hi-res Graphics from 
Simon's Basic 








it § 



Port 



Avasl, maties! Lower the mains'l and 
heave to. Put in to Commodore's Port 
for a short while and replenish your 
stores of unbiased news, reviews, and 
applications for your Commodore 64. 
We've got lots to do, so full steam ahead! 

You might have heard by this time 
that Jack Tramiel, founder and former 
head of Commodore, is now the head of 
Atari. Lineups in the microcomputer 
industry change as quickly as in 
professional baseball, don't they? Well, 
we'll see if Jack can keep up the same 
impressive batting average for a team in 
Silicon Valley. He certainly has his work 
cut out for him. 

Talk About Mixing Metaphors! 

Got a phone call and a care package 
from Deep Boat the other day. Though 
he has watched many of his compatriots 
jump ship in the latest round of battle, 
he remains loyally at his station, await- 
ing further orders. Seems a bit of 
shanghaiing has been going on, and 
Commodore is not at all happy with the 
idea that Mr. Tramiel has assembled his 
order of command with deserters and 
mutineers from Commodore itself. But 
Deep Boat will have none of it. He's a 
Commodorian through and through. 
While expressing his respect for Mr. 
Tramiel, he also underscored his con- 
fidence in Commodore — assuring me 
that they are not about to allow TTL 
(Tramiel Technologies Ltd.) Atari to 
wrest away Commodore's claim to num- 
ber one in home computers. (Read Out- 
post: Atari for more information 
regarding the Tramiel take-over.) 

Speak of the Devil 

Deep Boat backed up his prediction 
with some very hard evidence: a beta 



John J. Anderson 

copy of the arcade game, Satan 's Hollow, 
for the C-64. I could hardly believe my 
eyes when I booted up the game. It com- 
pares extremely favorably with the 
arcade version, which (you may or may 
not remember) featured absolutely 
incredible graphics. 

Though Satan's Hollow is to some 
degree a rehash of Galaxian, it is an ex- 
tremely engaging rehash, and it has 
some neat little features all its own. As 
an arcade game translation, it is utterly 
superlative, as Deep Boat assured me it 
would be. The sound effects of the game 
are also outstanding — completely true to 
their arcade namesake. Without a doubt, 
the Commodore 64 has established itself 
as a graphics and sound machine of 
unimpeachable repute. 

Deep Boat, best of luck, and keep it 
coming. You never steer us wrong. 

Simon's Sight and Sound 

If you have followed the last couple of 
columns, you know that we have been 
running a tutorial series from Com- 
modore 64 Sight and Sound, a new book 
available from Creative Computing 
Press. This month we excerpt a section 
on hi-res graphics from Simon's Basic. 

You may be one of the few C-64 own- 
ers around who still hasn't gotten a hold 
of Simon's Basic. That's a shame, since 
you are missing out on just about the fin- 
est programmer's learning tool available 
to you. I strongly recommend that you 
purchase it (it is priced very reasonably) 
— along with a copy of Sight and Sound 
of course. If you are having trouble 
locating the book at your local bookstore 



or software dealer, give us a call here at 
the magazine, and order one direct. 

Enough shameless plugging. On to the 
good stuff. 

Hi-Res Graphics 

Simon's Basic puts the powers of 
high-resolution graphics at the fingertips 
of the beginning programmer. As op- 
posed to low-res character graphics, hi- 
res allows you to plot geometric shapes. 
With just a few simple commands, you 
can build complex, multicolor pictures. 

HIRES 

The hires command tells the C-64 to 
go into high-resolution mode and in 
what screen and plot color to do so. By 
plot color, we mean the color the C-64 
will use to draw on the hi-res back- 
ground color when we get around to 
drawing on it. The format is 

HIRES screen color, plot color 
RETURN 

A hires command cannot work on its 
own, however. It needs some help. 

LINE 

The line command allows you to 
draw a line on the hi-res screen from one 
point to another. The program 

10 HIRES 0.1 

20 LINE 20, 40, 300, 250, 1 

30 GOTO 30 
draws a diagonal line across the screen. 
The format for the line command is as 
follows: 

LINE beg x, beg y, fin x, fin y, plot 

type 
where beg x is the beginning x value of 
the line, beg y is the beginning y value, 
fin x is the final x value, fin y is the final 



182 



October 1984 ■ Creative Computing 




'J=&X3EB&S^ m ?± 



IT'S NOT HOW MUCH YOU PAY. 



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IT'S HOW MUCH YOU GET. 



The computer at the top 
has a 64 K memory. 

It has the initials I, B, and 
M. And you pay for those 
initials— about $669. 

The Commodore 64™ has 
a 64K memory. 

But you don't pay for the 
initials, you just pay for the 
computer: $215. About one 
third the price of the IBM PCjr™ 

The Commodore 64 
also has a typewriter-type 



keyboard with 66 typewriter- 
type keys. (Not rubber chicklet 
keys like the IBM PCjr.) 

It has high resolution 
graphics with 320 x 200 pixel 
resolution, 16 available colors 
and eight 3-dimensional sprites. 

It has 9-octave high fidelity 
sound. 

The Commodore 64 is 
capable of running thousands 
of programs for home and 
office. And if you add a printer 



or color monitor, disk drive and 
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about equals the price of the 
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COMMODORE 64' 

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y value, and the plot type is set to 0, 1, 
or 2. For now we will always use a plot 
type set to 1. 

At first you are bound to be confused 
by the placement of x and y plots across 
the screen. Figure 1 may help give you a 
feel for the hi-res screen. 

Play around with the x and y values 
for line plots. Before long you will 
develop a rough idea of where plots oc- 
cur on the hi-res screen. 

Now let's get a taste of the animation 
potential of Simon's Basic in hi-res. The 
simple program shown here as Listing 1 
allows you to create an animated line 



I 



200 pixels 



320 pixels 



Figure 1. Dimensions of the hi-res screen. 

plot. You can build on this basic prin- 
ciple to create sophisticated moving pic- 
tures. It is used simply here, but can be 
used in sophisticated ways as well. 

As you can see from the listing, all 
you need to do is build a counter for the 
x and y values, then set up a loop. Each 
time through the loop, the line plots to 
the incremented x and y values. The re- 
sult: an animated drawing. 

REC 

Any guess what the rec command 
allows you to draw on a hi-res screen? 
You got it, a rectangle. As with line, it 
takes a while to get used to the numbers 
you need to use with the rectangle com- 
mand, but you can get the hang of it 
with a bit of practice. 

First, you tell the computer where you 
want the top lefthand corner of the 
rectangle to be. You do this by specifying 
X and Y coordinates. The only way to 
get a good feel for these coordinates is to 
experiment. 

Next, you tell the computer how wide 
and how long you want the rectangle to 
be. Again, it takes practice to learn what 
numbers give you the result you want. 

Listing 2 is an example of the use of 
the rec command. Type it in, and see 
where this set of coordinates places the 
triangle. The command is 

REC beg x.beg y.width.length.plot 

type 
where beg x and beg y are the 
coordinates of the top lefthand corner of 
the rectangle, width is the horizontal 
width of the rectangle, and length is the 
vertical length of the rectangle. 

What about that strange number 1 



tacked on the end of the expression? 
Well it tells the computer that this is a 
normal plot. We will look at inverse and 
clear plots just ahead. For now, all you 
need to know about is plot type 1. 

First, look at Listing 3. It puts the 
rec command to work for you in an ani- 
mated plot. 

Pretty good results for just a wee bit 
of effort, wouldn't you say? This pro- 
gram is very easy to understand once 
you get a grip on the rec command. It is 
a loop, and each time through the loop it 
increments the corners of the rectangle. 
The top lefthand corner moves down 
and to the right, while the bottom 
righthand corner moves up and to the 
right. This gives a three-dimensional 
effect. We stop plotting when X gets to 
251, so we won't error out. We actually 
begin plotting the entire figure again, but 
you can't see it happen, because it is 
plotting right over itself. 

A Closer Look at Plot Types 

Let's try to gain an understanding of 
plot types by playing with the plot types 
in our last example program. We'll 
change the plot type of the program by 
changing the last value in the REC state- 
ment, the plot type, to 0. What happens? 

If we specify a plot type of 0, nothing 
gets plotted. If a plot type encounters a 
plotted line, it will actually erase it. This 
comes in handy for "undrawing" ani- 
mated shapes. Listing 4 provides an 
example. 

As we saw earlier, a plot type of 1 is a 
normal plot, drawing a shape in the plot 
color across the background. No need to 
look any further at that plot type right 
now. 

A plot type of 2 "inverses" whatever it 
encounters. It turns a plot off if it is on, 
and on if it is off. We can use a plot type 
of 2 to make our animated rectangle 
change shape continously as it does in 
Listing S. 

Multi-Res — Best of Both Worlds 

So far we have been looking at the hi- 
res mode, in which we can put one plot 
color on top of one background color. 
Now get ready for the multi-res mode, 
which allows us to plot in three plotting 
colors, and with a little sneaky footwork, 
even more. 

The multicolor mode, which we shall 
call multi-res, is a variant of the hi-res 
mode — with half the horizontal resolu- 
tion but three times the color. It is up to 
you to decide which resolution to use 
with which graphics trade-offs. 

MULTI 

The multi command, when used 
following a call to the hires command, 
will cause all plotting to take place in 



multi-res. Format for the command is 

HIRES plot color, background color: 

MULTI color 1, color 2, color 3 

plot color = 0-15 

background color = 0-15 

color 1 = 0- 15 

color 2 = 0-15 

color 3 = 0-15 

Note that a multi command must 
always follow a hires command. The 
three parameters following multi define 
the plot colors you wish to use. 

Each plot color is selected by its 
multi command designation as the plot 
type in a plotting command. We will 
clarify this just ahead. Listings 6 and 7 
are some examples of hi-res graphics 
transposed into multi-res. 

In multi-res, each pixel is twice as 
wide as it appears in hi-res. As a result, 
multi-res has half the horizontal resolu- 
tion of hi-res. Still, multi-res has a pretty 
respectable look, and the trade off 
results in the ability to put multicolors 
on the screen. 

Plot Types in Multi-Res 

Plot types work slightly differently in 
multi-res than they do in hi-res to 
account for the additional colors avail- 
able. A plot type of still functions to 
clear a dot. A plot type of 1 plots a dot 
in color 1. A plot type of 2 plots in color 
2, and a plot type of 3 plots in color 3. 

If you specify a plot type of 4, the plot 
will inverse dot color— in the following 
fashion: 

color changes to color 3 

color 1 changes to color 2 

color 2 changes to color 1 

color 3 changes to color 

This plot type can give you animated 
rainbow effects for a small expenditure 
of code. 

Creative use of plot types can make 
animation a cinch. Listings 8 and 9 are 
some starting points. 

We'll continue our look at hi-res 
graphics next month. Until then, keep 
yourself booted up, and enjoy. ■ 

Listing I. 

1 REM LIST IMG 1 

Z REM ANIMATED -LINE - PLOT 

3 REM 

4 REM 

10 HIRES 0,7:Y-0 

ao line e,a,3ee.Y, i 

30 Y«Y»4tIF Y>230 THEN 30 
40 GOTO 30 
30 GOTO 30 

Listing 2. 

I REM LISTING 8 

B REM THE -REC - COMMAND - 

3 REM 

4 REM 

10 HIRES 0,7 

28 REC 30,30,120,180,1 

30 GOTO 30 



184 



October 1 984 ■ Creative Computing 




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1 REM LISTlr-aS 3 

2 REM ANIMATED "REC ■ PLOT 

3 REM 

4 REM 

5 X>|!T'30IA-130IB-I3e 
16 HIRES 8,7 

£0 REC X.Y.fl.B.I 

30 X"X»5iY»V«ll«"«-StB»B-3 

35 IF X>250 THEN SB 

40 OOTO 20 

50 OOTO SO 

Listing 4. 

1 REM LISTING 4 

2 REM -UNDRrHJINO* TO ANIMATE 

3 REM 

4 REM 

10 HIRES 0,7IX-SIY»3 

20 REC X,Y,X«lO,X»IO, I 

30 FOR Z-l TO 10INEXT Z 

40 REC X,Y,X*lO,Y»10.e 

SO X-X»HY«Y»I 

SO IF X>90 THEN 10 

70 OOTO 20 

Listing 5. 

1 REM LISTING 5 

2 REM -REC" PLOT "UNDRAWS- ITSELF 

3 REM 

4 REM 

5 HIRES 0,7 

IB X-ItY>3BlA>lSB!B»tS0 

20 REC X,Y,A,B,2 

30 X»X»5<Y«Y»1 !A«A-2tB"B-3 

3^ IF X>2S0 THEN 10 

4B OOTO 20 



Listing 6. 



1 REM LISTING 6 

2 REM ANIMATED "LINE" PLOT 

3 REM IN MULT I -RES 

4 REM 

5 HIRES B.IIMULTI 4,6,2 
IB X'20BtY-0tZ>l 

20 LINE 0,B,X,Y,Z 
30 X«X*2tY»Y«3tZ«ZM 
40 IF Z>4 THEN Z"l 
SO IF Y>25B THEN 5 
60 GOTO 20 



Listing 7. 



1 REM LISTING 7 

2 REM MORE MULTICOLORS 

3 REM IN MULT I -RES 

4 REM 

10 HIRES 0.7IMULTI 2,4,6 
20 REC 3,5,90,90,2 
30 REC IB, IB, 30, 30, 1 
40 REC 25,25,40,40,3 
SO GOTO 30 



Listing 8. 



1 REM LISTING S 

2 REM MORE ANIMATION USING PLOT TYPE 

3 REM IN THE MULT 1 -RES MODE 

4 REM 

3 HIRES O.HMULTl 0,7,3 
10 X'!06lY»e 
20 LINE 0,0,X,Y,Z 
30 X-X»8lY^Y*3lZ-Z«l 
40 IF Z-4 THEN Z-l 
30 IF X>850 THEN 10 
60 GOTO 20 

Listing 9. 

1 REM LISTING 9 

2 REM STILL MORE ANIMATIOM 

3 REM IN THE MULT I -RES MODE 

4 REM 

3 HIRES I.6IMULT1 4,1,6 
IB X>1B 

20 REC X,X«I0,X»IS,X»20,I 
30 FOR Z-l TO 10 l NEXT Z 
40 REC X,X*I0,X«13,X»20,0 
30 FOR Z-l TO 10INEXT Z 
60 REC X,X«IO,X»13,X»20,2 
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CIRCLE 171 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



October 1 984 • Creative Computing 



Jack Tramiel, a look back, 
a look ahead, and the 
Amiga Lorraine revisited. 



i $ 



Atari 



It has been nearly a year since I have 
manned the Outpost, and it feels good to 
be back. Rest assured that Dave and 
Sandy Small will return next month, to 
continue with their Atari machine lan- 
guage tutorial. But I just couldn't resist 
stepping back into the Outpost to report 
on Atari's condition following Warner's 
abrupt sale of the company. 

Many of you Atarians who have con- 
tacted me through the magazine or vis- 
ited the Creative Computing SIG on 
CompuServe (PCS-22) know of my 
continuing loyalty to the Atari 
machine — and that changing times have 
not changed those feelings. But undeni- 
ably, times have changed for Atari 
computers. After suffering losses of over 
a billion dollars in the past two fiscal 
years, Warner Communications franti- 
cally started hunting for a buyer. Their 
unlikely find was none other than Mr. 
Jack Tramiel, who as CEO of Com- 
modore International, personally helped 






John J. Anderson 

Atari bite the dust in the price wars of 
1982. Mr. Tramiel founded Commodore 
and built it from a storefront operation 
into a billion dollar company. 

He left his brainchild in January, trav- 
eled the world for a couple of months, 
and then negotiated the purchase of 
Atari Corporation (now under the um- 
brella of Tramiel Technologies Ltd.) in 
July. It should be noted that Warner 
Communications retained the coin- 
operated arcade game branch of Atari, 
as well as Ataritel, the experimental tele- 
communications group. You remember 
Ataritel. right? Its great claim to fame is 
that it has survived for nearly three 
years without ever announcing a 
product. 

So the very man whose name once 
spelled doom for Atari is now its last 
chance for salvation. No small irony 
there, but also cause for hope, I would 
assert. If there is one thing Mr. Tramiel 
knows about, it is marketing, and lousy 
marketing helped kill the old Atari. It 
may be that Jack's hubris will get the 
better of him this time, and that nobody 
can save Atari. Jack may also be the one 
person in the world who can turn the 
company around. 

I was impressed with his very first 
moves as CEO and chairman. He laid off 
almost all middle and upper level man- 
agers and treated Atari's recovery as if it 
was the start-up of a wholly new com- 
pany. This, I believe, was the only 
successful way to plan a comeback. If 
too much of the old Atari remained, the 
deck would be fatally stacked. The com- 
pany truly needed a totally fresh start. 



and the first thing Tramiel did was to see 
that Atari got it. 

Nobody is really sure what Jack 
Tramiel will do to and for the Atari 
product line. It seems likely that t he- 
Atari 800XL will continue to be sold, at 
least through early 1985. As for every- 
thing else, all bets are off. It is now 
highly unlikely that the 1450 XL, with 
built-in parallel bus disk drive and 
modem, will ever see the light of day. 



The company truly 

needed a totally fresh 

start, and the first thing 

Tramiel did was to see 

that Atari got it. 



Jack is savvy enough to know that the 
1450 is last year's product. He wants to 
get next year's out the door as soon as 
possible. And the 1450XL is not it. 
Hence we'll be hunting for another ma- 
chine to top the Outpost column mast- 
head. We have a hunch, but more on 
that up ahead. 

The only thing we are quite sure of is 
Tramiel's confidence. "We'll be number 
one within a year," he told Infoworld. 

A Look Back 

The Atari was my first computer, and 
it was probably somewhat due to the 
Atari that I got a break in the world of 
microcomputer journalism. Atari was 
the first computer company I ever wrote 
about for money. Most of the comment 
was praise, but I was first critical of 



October 1984 » Creative Computing 



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Atari 




Atari in an Infoworld editorial way back 
in 1981. Atari was at the time taking full 
page ads in trade papers telling pirates 
that "the game is over.*' Talk about a 
terminal ease of the smuggies and a 
wrong-headed approach to public rela- 
tions. Aside from criticizing this, I 
decried the company's noncrediting of 
individual programmers on their soft- 
ware packages and wrote that Atari 
tended toward "schizophrenia" because 
of its size and the way it competed 
against itself. I suggested that a new 
approach was necessary if the company 
was to avoid a marketing problem and 
an image problem. 

When I finished my first 
Outpost:Atari in November of 1982, 
Atari was finishing up a smash hit year. 
Video games were the American rage, 
and Atari was the video game company. 
It seemed they could do no wrong, and 
top-level managers began to believe in 
their own infallibility. It seemed, too, 
that the decision had been made to allow 
the superlative 400 and 800 computers 
to languish, while the company spent 
millions promoting games. 

Right up until the end. that stupen- 
dous miscalculation prevailed: witness 
the unbelievable introduction of the 
model 7800 videogame unit weeks before 
the old company's demise. Meanwhile 
the computer line had been cheapened 
and made less compatible with itself. No- 



Atari is in a precarious 

state now with one 

foot on Jack Tramiel 

and the other on a 

banana peel. 



body near the mechanism of decision- 
making (if there was any such 
mechanism at Atari) ever had much of 
an idea of what a product line should 
really be about. And about the last thing 
they ever would have done was listen to 
somebody who did. 

After a year manning the Outpost. I 
had grown depressed. My marketing 
criticisms had become a monthly soap 
opera and were more caustic each time 
around. My feelings about Atari the 
company became counterproductive to 
the column. My dealings with Atari cor- 
porate were at an all-time low, and it 
seemed as if there was a new public rela- 
tions director almost weekly. Atari had 
begun to lose money, you see. and no 
amount of Maalox would help. The 
panic stampede had. by then, warmed 



up to only a weekend jogger's pace, but 
already everybody had his sneakers on. 
A year later, I can't resist getting in a 
quick "I told them so." If only they had 
made the 5200 game machine 400/800 
compatible and offered an optional key- 
board peripheral. If only they had killed 
the 1200 on the drawing board. If only 
they had brought out the 1450 last fall. 
If only they had acted early to change 
their image. If only they had protected 
the morale and egos of their most cre- 
ative minds. If only they had realized 
that the videogame and the low-end 
home computer were no longer separate 
markets. If only they had cut costs with- 
out cutting quality. If only the XL series 
had been truly compatible with the old 
Ataris. 

If only they had done what I was say- 
ing all along, right here in this column, 
they wouldn't have fallen down and 
gone bing bang boom. And you know 
what they say about "the bigger they 
are." 

A Look Ahead 

Hey, I know it's easy to look back and 
write history and say "they should have 
listened to me." The hard part is to see 
into the future and determine where the 
avoidable mistakes are. The trick is to 
continue predicting things right. Atari is 
in a precarious state now with one foot 
on Jack Tramiel and the other on a ba- 
nana peel. If it falls again, this time its 
frail bones will shatter. It will go to that 
big Chuck E. Cheese parlor in the sky. 

In Ridley Scott's vision-of-the future 
movie "Blade Runner," everywhere you 
look there are Atari billboards and signs. 
It must have seemed a safe bet back in 
1982 that Atari would be a company to 
survive well into the 21st century. 
Videogames made twice as much as 
movies that year (over $7 billion). Upon 
viewing the film today, the signs seem 
dated. Timestamped, you might even 
say. 

What are you going to do. Jack, to re- 
vive the battered behemoth? How are 
you going to get people to stop buying 
IBMs and Apples and your own darned 
Commodores and start buying TTL 
Ataris? Do you know what people want? 
Do you know some minds who can de- 
liver it? Can you get it down to an 
attractive cost without sacrificing qual- 
ity and performance? Can you manufac- 
ture it in quantity within a reasonable 
amount of time? 

Certainly not out of the blue, no. You 
need to find a product worth putting 
your name on, worth putting the Atari 
name on. And I've got news for you, 
Jack. I know what that product is. 

What do micro buyers want? Easy. 
They want 1000K RAM, 10Mb of hard 



disk space; 3-D color animated graphics 
with a resolution indistinguishable from 
broadcast TV; a built-in modem, laser- 
disk interface, and printer; stereo sound 
on a par with a Moog; and ease of use 
like the Macintosh. And they want it for 
$99.95. Deliver this with a free piece of 
software like a flight simulator that 
really looks and feels like flying through 
the sky, and you can have your wish. 
You can be number one again. And 
maybe stay there for a while. 

But this is a machine for the drawing 
board. It's not the one available now to 
supplant the tired old Atari computer 
line. What to glue your name on in the 
meantime, while you await the dream 
machine? You've got to get as close to 
that set of specifications as you can, at as 
close to the price. Most important, you 



Using bit-plane 

animation, an approach 

used by machines 

costing upwards of 

$50,000, the Lorraine 

creates fluid movement 

in multi-color hi-res. 



must be willing to take a risk. If you 
introduce just another IBM-compatible, 
you will surely go down the tubes. Sure, 
IBM compatibility would be nice, but 
you had better be able to do a whole lot 
more. Fact is, the IBM standard is 
mediocre, and most of the public knows 
that by now. You need something more, 
much more, much much more. And now 
I'll give you the name, address, and tele- 
phone number of the company to get in 
touch with. 

Who'll Stop Lorraine 

Way back in the April 1984 issue of 
Creative Computing (p. 150), I reported 
on a new computer from Amiga, a com- 
pany known only as a manufacturer of 
joysticks and a kludgy foot -con trolled 
joystick called the Joyboard. I had been 
ready for another big presentation 
resulting in a big letdown, but 1 was sur- 
prised. The machine, code-named Lor- 
raine, was a total knockout. I'll stand by 
the comment I made then: "Suffice to 
say it is the most amazing graphics and 
sound machine that will ever have been 
offered to the consumer market." 

The Lorraine is based on a 68000 
microprocessor, running at 

8MHz— faster than the Macintosh. The 
CPU is backed up by three custom VLSI 



October 1 984 ■ Creative Computing 



189 



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Atari 



chips to handle graphics, sound, and 
I/O (sound familiar?), and 128K RAM, 
expandable to at least 1Mb. A 5.25" 
internal floppy capable of storing 320K 
is standard. An expansion box, which 
will contain a second floppy drive, card 
slots, and space for an optional hard disk 
is already planned. 

As for the graphics of the Amiga Lor- 
raine, well, they nearly defy description. 
Using bit-plane animation, an approach 
used by machines costing upwards of 
$50,000, the Lorraine creates fluid 
movement in multi-color hi-res. In my 
earlier report I stated that the "Lorraine 
is capable of providing multi-color, real- 
time animated images on a par with (and 
probably superior to) Saturday morning 
cartoons." NTSC and RGB video out- 
puts will be provided, as will 80-column 
text display. Sound capabilities, you ask? 
Yes, four-channel stereo with speech 
capability. 

The first time we saw the Lorraine at 
Winter CES it was a landscape of bread- 
boards. By summer CES, the PROMs 
were in hand, but development systems 
were needed to drive them (pay no atten- 
tion to that man behind the curtain). By 
the time you read this, the first working 
prototypes will be in operation. The Lor- 
raine is a reality in search of marketing. 
And without the marketing, even a 
machine like the Lorraine won't get off 
the ground — even with a custom chip set 
by Jay Miner (who, incidentally, de- 
signed the custom chip set for the Atari 
400 and 800 machines). And that is why 
you are reading about the Lorraine in 
Outpost: Atari. In April, I called the 
Lorraine "finally, the next-generation 
Atari." 

Jack, it is up to you now to be wise 
enough to see that this is true. Get the 
cost down to $1000 and perhaps some- 
one like Thomas Dolby to be the spokes- 
man. Then get the machine out the 
door — with your name on it. And 
remember, Mr. Tramiel, your name is 
Atari. Do it proud. ■ 

Firms Mentioned in this Column 

Amiga Corporation 
3350 Scott Blvd.. Bldg. 7 
Santa Clara, CA 95051 
(408) 748-0222 




October 1984 c Creative Computing 



190 



MegaBasic: Rolls Royce or Subaru? 



IBM 

Images 




MegaBasic 

Billed as the Rolls Royce of Basics, 
this language is a product of the Ameri- 
can Planning Corporation. It features di- 
rect addressing of one megabyte of 
memory, a semi-compiled run-time pack- 
age for zippy execution and a Forth-like 
language extensibility. MegaBasic edges 
into the domain of block structured lan- 
guages like Pascal by supporting recur- 
sion and parameter passing by value or 
address. Like Morgan Microcomputing's 
Professional Basic, MegaBasic allows 
program lines, functions, and procedures 
to be referred to by name. Up to 64 sepa- 
rate "packages," which can be used ei- 
ther as separate programs or as overlays, 
can coexist simultaneously in memory. 

The version reviewed here is 4.1, 
which requires an 8086/8088 processor, 
128K, one disk drive, CP/M-86, MPM- 
86, TurboDOS, MS-DOS, or PC-DOS. 
Although the manual talks about several 
utilities that were supposed to be on the 
disk, only one was actually present on 
my copy: a program size compressor. 

Numeric representation is Binary 
Coded Decimal (BCD) floating point 
with a range of -10 83 to 10 63 . BCD 
represents decimal values up to the pre- 
cision limits exactly. This eliminates the 
"missing penny" problem resulting from 
round-off error; BCD is especially 
suited, therefore, for financial calcula- 
tions. APC supplies both 8-and 14-digit 
precision versions of the MegaBasic sys- 
tem on the diskette. Unfortunately, there 
is no way to use any numeric representa- 
tion other than BCD that I could find. 
Integer freaks will be disappointed. 

The documentation is a handsome 
304-page manual with a table of con- 
tents, index, and (bless their hearts) 
tabbed section dividers. Unfortunately, 



Susan Gl inert-Cole 



it is inadequate considering the tremen- 
dous number of new functions and state- 
ments introduced, not to mention a 
different editor. Very few examples show 
actual command usage in proper con- 
text, although there are several pro- 
grams on the disk to study. This 
wouldn't be a big problem if the syntax 
were identical to IBM's, but there are 



MegaBasic has an 
impressive range of 

new functions, 

statements, and low 

level system 

interface tools. 



subtle differences which you must figure 
out by trial and error. The documenta- 
tion is also out of sync with the disk: 
files mentioned in the manual didn't ex- 
ist, and several files on the disk were not 
mentioned. It didn't take too much to 
figure it out, but I expect the documen- 
tation to save me the trouble of having to 
do that. The manual needs a thorough 
overhaul before it can be given a passing 
grade. 

Pros 

I'll start with the good news: 
MegaBasic has an impressive range of 
new functions, statements, and low level 




IDIUillllllllH I 

^_ gi 



system interface tools. 

In addition to the usual string func- 
tions, like LEN(X$), CHR$(X), and 
STR(X$), MegaBasic provides a full 
complement of convenient extras. 
TRIM (X$) returns the string X$ 
stripped of all leading and trailing spaces. 
REV(X$) returns X$ with the characters 
in reverse order. If you prefer a more ex- 
otic order, RESEQ(X$,N) will reorder 
X$ depending on the value of N. The re- 
turned sequence begins with the first byte 
of X$, followed by the Nth byte, followed 
by the Nth byte after that and so on. The 
process wraps around to the beginning of 
the string and continues until all the 
bytes have been accessed. The manual 
points out that this function is useful for 
restructuring a string from a row/- 
column order to a column/row order and 
vice versa, sector translation tables for 
operating systems, and playing card 
games. MIN(X&,Y$, . . . ) returns the 
minimum string expression value listed; 
MAX(X$,Y$, . . . ) returns the 
maximum. 

The math functions available are com- 
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One unusual one is POLY(X,A(),D), 
which returns the polynomial evaluation 
of X using coefficient array A() contain- 
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polynomial degree. 

A new data definition statement in- 
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value. In this case, the line list is a se- 
quence of line numbers that contain data 
statements. A data read pointer is set to 
the first data statement on or after the 
line number selected in the branch, 
allowing data selection based on a multi- 



October 1 984 ■ Creative Computing 



191 



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way decision. 

Another valuable statement is local 
(variable list), local creates temporary 
simple variables which can be used 
within a subroutine, user defined func- 
tion, or variable. Arrays cannot be used 
as a local variable. This would allow 
you, for example, to declare X in the 
body of the main program, and use X 
within a subroutine, without affecting 
the value of the original X. Variables are 
not usually permitted scope in Basic, 
although scope is a regular feature of 
structured languages. 

Two statements are used to create 
functions and procedures that will be 
"shared," e.g., available, from outside 
the main program. This is similar to the 
assembly language attribute public. 
Functions, whether shared or not, can 
be multi-line, and do not have to begin 
with FN. 

The segmentation and overlay scheme 
of MegaBasic is implemented by eight 



The program appears 

robust; no matter what 

sort of strange 

commands I issued, 

MegaBasic coped 

without a single lockup. 



new statements, def shared (function 
or procedure) and def shared data 
(list of variable names) are used to define 
shared functions, procedures, and vari- 
able names, include (list of package 
names) will bring a list of program files 
containing packages into memory for 
later execution, link (program name) 
[.(common variables)] will terminate the 
current program, erase it from memory, 
load the program specified by the string 
expression, and execute it. Programs can 
be dynamically merged during execution 
with the merge (program name) state- 
ment. If, for some reason you want to re- 
move program lines after they have been 
executed, you can do this with the del 
(line number — line number). 

A wealth of file and device I/O func- 
tion, which are sorely missing from PC 
Basic, are included. dir$ returns file 
names, one at a time, from the directory, 
permitting sequential file processing. 
file(SS) will look up the file SS in the 
directory and return a 1 if present, a 
otherwise. filepos(X) returns the 
current position of the file pointer from 
the beginning of the open file X. 
filesize(X) returns the file size in bytes 
or, if placed on the left side of an assign- 



ment statement, will set the file size to 
the number of bytes on the righthand 
side. space(X) returns the number of 
bytes available on the disk drive. 

The program appears robust; no mat- 
ter what sort of strange commands I is- 
sued, MegaBasic coped without a single 
lockup. The error messages were not al- 
ways helpful, but by and large, it was 
relatively easy to figure out what the 
problem was. 



Cons 

And now folks, for the bad news. As 
already stated above, the documentation 
is inadequate. To begin your journey in 
the Rolls, you are instructed to type 
BASIC. This results in a FILE NOT 
FOUND error; there is no file on the 
disk with such a simple name. Instead, 
the programs are called mysterious 
names like MSDBAS08.EXE. A little 
poking around in the manual will shed 
some light on the purpose of these files, 
but it is a bit rude to have the door 
handle come off in your hand. 

The editor in MegaBasic is reminis- 
cent of, but not nearly as good as, 
EDLIN. Its basic philosophy is very 
primitive line editing. This is performed 
by a thoroughly un-mnemonic group of 
CTRL-letter keystrokes, some of which 
do not perform as described in the man- 
ual. Editing is really weird. You can't 
move backward and forward on the line; 
the cursor keys are disabled. Instead, 
you can enter a line (and do destructive 
backspacing), or copy an old line letter 
by letter, word by word, or entirely. Al- 
though the manual says you can move 
backward by word with the ctrl-W 
command, I found this did a destructive 
backspace by word (the manual says this ■ 
is done with ctrl-T). Inserting charac- | 
ters in a line is signaled with a ctrl-Y, 
which puts a left angle bracket in the 
line. You enter the desired letters, and 
emit another CTRL-Y (putting a right an- 
gle bracket in the line), when done. Al- 
though I entered only short programs, I 
found editing by this method absolute 
agony. 

In addition to these line commands, 
MegaBasic has global search move, 
copy, and replace facilities. There is 
some mimimal syntax checking when a 
line is entered; some syntax errors are 
caught, but others aren't detected until 
the program is actually run. The superb 
syntax checking of Professional Basic 
spoiled me some. After all, IBM Basic 
doesn't have dynamic syntax check- 
ing. I guess I found the half-hearted 
attempt of MegaBasic more irritating 
than no error checking at all. 

Another problem, which may be due 
to the poor documentation, is that there 
doesn't seem to be any way to list a pro- 



CIRCLE 151 ON READER SERVICE CARD 



192 



October 1984 « Creative Computing 




IBM 



3 



gram to the printer. Listing 2 was pro- 
duced by good old Shift-PrtSc. One 
other point: no sound (not even the 
primitive but useful beep) or graphics 
statements are currently implemented. 

Listing 1 shows the same PC-Basic 
Sieve program as last month. This was 
loaded directly into MegaBasic as an 
ASCII file. MegaBasic did some partial 
conversion to its own syntax, (step was 
changed to by, for example). Other syn- 
tax incompatibilities were left for me to 
change manually (the abbreviated rem 
statement, for example). After all this, 
the program ran incorrectly, because of 
the way MegaBasic handles gotos 
within an if . . . then loop. I couldn't 



If your IBM PC is early 
vintage, you can give it 
a silicon facelift with a 
modest expenditure of 
$30. 



figure out from the manual how to do it 
any other way than the kludge in lines 
190 and 195. After all this effort, the 
program times were very disappointing 
(see Table 1). MegaBasic is not for pro- 
grammers who want to hear the sound 
of screeching bits and see smoke issuing 
from the 8088 during execution. 

In short, MegaBasic isn't exactly a 
Roll Royce. It reminds me more of my 
Subaru. Bristling with bells, whistles, 
and knobs to twiddle, it is slow to accel- 
erate, dependable, and runs like a clock. 

Miniature Vignettes 

If your IBM PC is early vintage, you 
can give it a silicon facelift with a mod- 
est expenditure of $30 for a new ROM 
chip. You can tell if your machine is 
showing its age if its serial number is 
0300960 or lower and the BIOS date is 
10/19/81 or earlier. The ROM date can 

be checked with a four-line Basic 
program: 

10 DEF SEG = &HFFFF 
20 FOR X = 5 TO 15 
30 PRINT CHR$(PEEK (X)) 
40 NEXT X 

The new BIOS is required if you want 
to install an expansion chassis or hook 
your computer into the IBM Cluster. A 
new BIOS chip is supplied with these 
two hardware extensions, but you might 
find some piece of hardware that re- 
quires the update. It is available from 
IBM as part number 1501005; the kit in- 
cludes a chip puller, instructions and, of 
course, the chip itself. 



10 

IS ' 

20 

30 

40 

50 

60 

70 

80 

90 ' 

110 

120 

130 

140 

ISO 

160 

170 

180 

190 

220 

230 

240 



Sieve of Eratosthenes 
PC-BASIC 



lOOOiPRIME - 2 



TIME* - "OlOiO" 

DEFINT A-2i MAXINT 

DIM X (MAXINT) 

FOR I - 1 TO MAXINT STEP 2 

X<I> - 1 
NEXT I 

PRINT PRIME | 

IF PRIME X PRIME > MAXINT THEN 180 

FOR I - PRIME X PRIME TO MAXINT STEP PRIME ♦ PRIME 

X(I> - 
NEXT I 

FOR J - PRIME ♦ 1 TO MAXINT 

IF X<J) > THEN PRIME - JtOOTO 110 
NEXT J 

PRINTi PRINT "elapsed time - ■ jTIME* 
END 



Listing 1. 



10 Rem Sieve oi Eratosthenes 




20 Rem MEGABASIC 




30 Rem 




40 MAXINT - 1000; PRIME - 2 




50 Dim X (MAXINT) 




60 For I - 1 to MAXINT by 2 




70 X<I> - I 




80 Next I 




90 Rem 




110 Print PRIME, 




120 Rem 




130 I* PRIME X PRIME > MAXINT then 180 




140 For I - PRIME X PRIME to MAXINT by PRIME ♦ PRIME 


150 X<I) - 




160 Next I 




170 Rem 




180 For J - PRIME ♦ 1 to MAXINT 




190 U X<J> > then PRIME - J 




195 I* X(J> > then Goto 110 




220 Next J 




230 Rem 




240 End 




Ready 





Listing 2. 



Basic 

PC-Basic (interpreted) 
PC-Basic (compiled) 
Professional Basic 
MegaBasic (interpreted) 
MegaBasic (runtime) 
MegaBasic (runtime, crunched) 



Time (in seconds) 

13 

4 (single precision) 

8 

20 

19 

18.5 



Table 1. Sieve of Eratosthenes. 

If you are tired of the same old black 
and white in the high-resolution graph- 
ics mode, one short instruction will 
change the foreground color to any of 16 
colors. The instruction is: 



OUT &H3D9, COLOR 
For example, the statement OUT 
&H3D9, 2 will show a black background 
and a green foreground display. 

In keeping with the above short pro- 



October 1984 c Creative Computing 



193 



IBM 



**« ASTRO *** 

lO CL9.KEY OFFlWIDTH BOiSCREEN 0,1: COLOR 7,0,0lDEFlNT A-Zl 

A«-STRING* <2, 219)1 8»0»S*-"Y" lP«32sP«="*" 
20 I«-"Out of Fu»l (ENTER) "tK*»"CR ASH ! (ENTER) " :F»100 
30 Y*-INKEY«lIF Y«-"l" THEN N— 1 ELSE IF Y»«"2" THEN N«0 

ELSE IF Y»-"3" THEN N-l 
40 F-F-liS-S+liP-P+NtLOCATE 24,80iPRINTi IF P<9 THEN P=9 ELSE 

IF P>80 THEN P-SO 
SO Q«SCREEN(l,P)lIF 8=219 THEN I*=K«: OOTO 80 ELSE IF S=42 

THEN S«S+10iF»F*25 
60 COLOR 7i LOCATE l,Pl PRINT S*s 1 IF RND(PX.3 THEN COLOR 7| 

LOCATE 24,RND(P)«76+li PRINT P*| 
70 LOCATE 1,1a PRINT S|"i";F|« COLOR RND(P> *6+l 1 LOCATE 24, 

RND(P)»7A+li PRINT AS; 1 IF FOO THEN 30 
80 COLOR 7i LOCATE l,lt PRINT S; f F; .LOCATE 2, 1:PRINT 1*11 

INPUT Y»i GOTO lO 



Listing 3. 

grams, Chris Fricdl contributed an 
eight-line arcade game written in Basic 
(see Listing 3). This is one of the niftiest 
tour de forces I have seen in a long time. 
I have played many games with a code 
size a thousand times larger which are 
about a thousand times less fun. His 
description follows. 

Astro 

Astro was developed by Ascalon Soft- 
ware in an attempt to find out just how 



small a game program could be. Astro 
was first programmed on a TRS-80 and 
consisted of eight lines of coding each 
with fewer than 64 characters per line. 

The object of the game is to dodge the 
asteroids while trying to pick up the fuel 
pods (*). The player controls the ship by 
using the number keys 1, 2, and 3. Press- 
ing the 1 key will cause the ship to move 
left. It will continue to move left until 
another key is pressed, or the ship is a 
short distance from the left side of the 



screen. The 2 key stops the sideways 
movement of the ship, and pressing 3 
causes the ship to move right. 

One point is given to the player for 
each unit of fuel expended. In addition 
to 10 points for picking up a fuel pod, 
the player receives an extra 25 units of 
fuel. 

Hint: Remember that the PC has a 
keyboard buffer. Holding down a key for 
any length of time starts to fill up the 
buffer. If you press another key immedi- 
ately after holding down a key, the new 
direction command will be delayed. This 
could cause you to crash or miss an 
opportunity for extra fuel. For best re- 
sponse just top the key you want and 
then release it. 

Feedback 

Anyone wishing to pay me a timely 
compliment can do so in the 
CompuServe IBM PC Sig or Creative's 
own Sig. I am now tuning in several 
times a week. M 

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CIRCLE 126 ON READER SERVICE CARC 



BEFORE YOU BUY 

ANOTHER PIECE 

OF SOFTWARE 



CONSULT THIS BUYER'S GUIDE 



Selecting the programs. 
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LOOK NO FURTHER. 
THE OLYMPIC EDITION 
OFTHECKE/1771 / 
COMPUTING 1984 
SOFTWARE BUYER'S 
GU1DE\SHERE\ 

The Editors of CREATIVE 
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Full descriptions, product 
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In addition to the Olympic- 
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• A complete directory of 
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program descriptions, sys- 
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• A full listing of software 




manufacturers, with names, 
addresses, tvpes of software 
made and compatible hard- 
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If you own an Apple. Atari. 
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Order vour copy of the 
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BUYER'S GUIDE today! 

Also available at your local news- 
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Creative Computing 1984 



Software Buyer's Guide 



( \ 1914. Morristown. NJ 07960 



MF1F 



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SOFTWARE 



ATTENTION APPLE. IBM. Commodore. Atari. Tl 99/ 
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HORSE & DOG HANDICAPPING PROGRAMS FOR 
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FOR TRS-80 MODELS 1/III/4-LAZYFONT creates and 
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COMMODORE 64/VIC 20 Games//educalional soft- 
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Write for FREE 120 page catalog. DYNACOMP. PO Box 
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FREE Commodore— 64/TI99-4A/VIC-20/TR580-COCO/ 
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TI-99/4A. C-64. TIMEX 16K-48K. VIC. IBM. owners. 5 
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TRS-80 Model 4-Play HEARTS card game with skilled 
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INTRODUCING 'StaticTrap"' Stop body static before 
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SANYO 550-1. Blow-out price— $615: 555-2. 360K— 
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NEW ... SHOPPER S GUIDE TO SAVINGS'!! Best 
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BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES 



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COMMODORE 64 



THE CAR MAINTENANCE EXPENSE PROGRAM — 
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ARIZONA 



HEATHKIT ELECTRONIC CENTERS- 
Computers. Software. Peripherals. 



CALIFORNIA 



COLORADO 



HEATHKIT ELECTRONIC CENTERS — Heath/Zenith 
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CONNECTICUT 



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HAWAII 



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WASHINGTON 



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Index To Advertisers 



Reader 
Service No. 



Advertiser 



206 



102 

104 
107 
110 
105 
106 
112 

111 
109 
113 
114 
115 
208 
207 
116 
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118 
120 
119 
122 
124 
126 
127 
128 
129 
130 
133 
132 
135 
108 
141 



Aardvark 

Art 

AHenbach 

Alpha Delta Communications 

Apple Compute' 

Art Sci 

BASF 

Beadle Brothers 

Borland 

Borland 

CBS Software 

Commodore 

CompuServe 

CompuServe 

Computel Publishing Society 

Computer Discount Products 

Computer Mail Order 

Computer Power Solutions 

Compuview 

Conroy La-Point 

Cosmic 

Cosmos 

CPAids 

Cybertynx 

Data South 

Davidson + Assoc 

Decision Economics 

Dennison Computer Supplies 

Designware 

Disc Washer 

Disc World 

Doubleday & Company 

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Electronic Arts 

Electronic Specialists 

Epyx 



Page 



172 
37 

164 

134 

50, 51 

48.49 

78 

155 

1 

27 

68 

183 
90 

163 

186 



Reader 
Service No. 



Advertiser 



156 



149 
157 

15 
144 
98. 99 
132 
173 
143 

94 
160 

21 
194 
9 
138 
130 
148 

16 
101 

84 
188 

55 



138 Epyx 

139 Epyx 

142 Fliptrack 

143 General Electric 

140 Harcourt. Brace + Jovanovich 

145 Hayes 

146 Hayes 
125 Heath 

148 Human Edge Software (HES) 

150 IBM 

149 IBM 

147 Inlocom 

152 Inkwell Systems 

169 Inmac 

151 International Computer Bank 

153 Janus Dysc Company 
131 Kensington Microwave 
212 Krel 

155 Learning Company 

156 Learning Wen 

159 Lyco Computing 
136 Mannesmann-TaHy 

157 Meca 

158 Megahaus 

160 Micro Mail 
194 Micro So 
173 Mmdscape 

209 MultiTech Sytems 

National Education Corp 

190 NEC 

165 Nibblenotch 

166 Nonagon 
NRI Schools 

167 Okidata 

168 Olympus Software 

170 Opportunities lor Learning 



Page 



57 

59 

2 

32, 33 

48 

88. 89 

152. 153 

Cov 4 

75 

38.39 

136. 137 

168. 169 

181 

81 

192 

93 

97 

129 

7 

101 

174. 175 

41 

135 

17 

166 

112 

53 

190 

81 

170 

193 

95 

103 

159 

188 

26 



Reader 
Service No. 



Advertiser 



161 Precision Data Products 
175 Precision Software 

1 7 1 Professional Handicapping 

1 72 Prometheus 
211 Prometheus 

177 Protecto 

178 Oantex 

179 Quark 

174 Oumsept 

181 Radio Shack 

191 Random House Software 

184 Rising Star Tec 
164 Satellite Software 

187 Scarborough Systems 

182 Scarborough Systems 

188 Scholastic Software 

189 Scott. Foresman 

183 Sensible Software 

192 Sir-tech Software 

185 Smart Data 

186 Smart Data 

193 SMC Thoroughbred Software 

162 Sublogic 

196 Systems Management Assoc 
195 Systems Management Assoc 
205 Tecmar 

197 Terrapin 

199 Transend 

198 Tnppe Lite 

200 US Robotics 

144 Xerox /Business Systems Group 

203 Xerox/Weekly Reader 

204 Xerox /Weekly Reader 

201 Wadsworth 

202 Walden Books 



Coming Attractions 



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Cov 2 

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18. 19 

35 

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87 



November 

You have been waiting for this for ten 
years: the incredible tenth anniversary 
issue of Creative Computing. Here is the 
history and future of personal computing 
told by the people who made history and 
who will make the future. An all-star cast 
of 50 movers and shakers tells you the 
story from the inside. People like Scott 
Adams. Rodnay Zaks, Adam Osborne. 
Peter McWilliams, Carl Helmers. Don 
Estridge, George Morrow. Clive Sinclair, 
Seymour Papert. Gordon Bell, John 
Kemeny, Bill Godbout, and 38 others. 

If you are not a subscriber, send in 
your card today. This one is sure to be a 
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December 

As we barrel forward, this is the month 
we pause for a second and look back at 
1984 and forward to 1985. We will publish 
our selections for the ten best computers 
on the market in ten size/price categories, 
and we will also make our predictions on 
what will be coming out in 1985. 

Our special section will focus on word 
processing packages— what to look for 
and getting the most out of a package. Be 
with us then! 





January 

As we start our second decade in ear- 
nest, our theme is Technology Today 
and Tommorrow. Submicron particles, 
superconductivity, miniaturization, and 
other futuristic technologies will be 
explained and examined in depth. Learn 
what the pioneers in these fields are doing 
and what impact their work will have on 
your life. 

The special insert section for January 
will focus on software for forecasting. 
Barry Keating will discuss what can and 
cannot be forecast by computer, what 
programs are available, and how well 
those programs perform. 



200 



October 1 984 e Creative Computing 



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Please indicate which of the following mi- 
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Own 


2 Plan 
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A 


L 


Alan 


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M 


Commodore /PET 


C 


N 


Digital Equipment, DEC 


D 





Heath Zenith 


E 


P 


IBM 


F 


O 


Radio Shack /Tandy TRS-80 


Q 


R 


Texas Instruments 


H 


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Timex Sinclair 


1 


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3 For what, if any. business application(s) 
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101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 
126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 
151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 
176 177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 
201 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 
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326 327 328 329 330 331 332 333 334 335 
351 352 353 354 355 356 357 358 359 360 
376 377 378 379 380 381 382 383 384 385 
401 402 403 404 405 406 407 408 409 410 
426 427 428 429 430 431 432 433 434 435 
451 452 453 454 455 456 457 458 459 460 
476 477 478 479 480 481 482 483 484 485 

PLEASE PRINT CLEARLY-Use only 



Void after December 31. 1984 
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136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 
161 162 163 164 105 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 
186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 
211 212 213 214 215 216 217 218 219 220 221 222 223 224 225 
236 237 238 239 240 241 242 243 244 245 246 247 248 249 250 
261 262 263 264 265 266 267 268 269 270 271 272 273 274 275 
286 287 288 289 290 291 292 293 294 295 296 297 298 299 300 
311 312 313 314 315 316 317 318 319 320 321 322 323 324 325 
336 337 338 339 340 341 342 343 344 345 346 347 348 349 350 
361 362 363 364 365 366 367 368 369 370 371 372 373 374 375 
386 387 388 389 390 391 392 393 394 395 396 397 398 399 400 
411 412 413 414 415 416 417 418 419 420 421 422 423 424 425 
436 437 438 439 440 441 442 443 444 445 446 447 448 449 450 
461 462 463 464 465 466 467 468 469 470 471 472 473 474 475 
486 487 488 489 490 491 492 493 494 495 496 497 498 499 500 



one card per person 



NAME 



PHONE # (_ 
TITLE 



APT 



COMPANY 

ADDRESS . 

CITY 

(Zip code mu*t be included to Insure delivery ) w-iuwo 

4 □ Pleas* sand me 12 Issues of Creaf/tr* Computing for $19.97 and bill 
me. (Full 1 year subscription price $24.97.) 



STATE 



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creative computing 

Please indicate which of the following mi- 
crocomputers you currently own and /or 
plan to buy in the next 12 months. 





1 

Own 


2 Plan 
10 Buy 


Apple 


A 


L 


Atari 


B 


M 


Commodore PET 


C 


N 


Digital Equipment / DEC 


D 


O 


Heath /Zenith 


E 


P 


IBM 


F 


O 


Radio Shack /Tandy TRS-80 


Q 


R 


Texas Instruments 


H 


S 


Timex Sinclair 


1 


T 


Other (specify) 


J 


u 


None 


K 


V 



3 For what, if any. business application(s) 
do you use the microcomputer you cur- 
rently own? 



Void after December 31. 1984 
101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 
126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 
151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 
176 177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 
201 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 211 212 213 214 215 216 217 218 219 220 221 222 223 224 225 
226 227 228 229 230 231 232 233 234 235 236 237 238 239 240 241 242 243 244 245 246 247 248 249 250 
251 252 253 254 255 256 257 258 259 260 261 262 263 264 265 266 267 268 269 270 271 272 273 274 275 
276 277 278 279 280 281 282 283 284 285 286 287 288 289 290 291 292 293 294 295 296 297 298 299 300 
301 302 303 304 305 306 307 308 309 310 311 312 313 314 315 316 317 318 319 320 321 322 323 324 325 
326 327 328 329 330 331 332 333 334 335 336 337 338 339 340 341 342 343 344 345 346 347 348 349 350 
351 352 353 354 355 356 357 358 359 360 361 362 363 364 365 366 367 368 369 370 371 372 373 374 375 
376 377 378 379 380 381 382 383 384 385 386 387 388 389 390 391 392 393 394 395 396 397 398 399 400 
401 402 403 404 405 406 407 408 409 410 411 412 413 414 415 416 417 418 419 420 421 422 423 424 425 
426 427 428 429 430 431 432 433 434 435 436 437 438 439 440 441 442 443 444 445 446 447 448 449 450 
451 452 453 454 455 456 457 458 459 460 461 462 463 464 465 466 467 468 469 470 471 472 473 474 475 
476 477 478 479 480 481 482 483 484 485 486 487 488 489 490 491 492 493 494 495 496 497 498 499 500 

PLEASE PRINT CLEARLY-Use only one card per person 



NAME 



COMPANY 
ADDRESS 
CITY 



PHONE * ( 
TITLE 



APT 



STATE 



ZIP 



(Zip code must be included to insure delivery ) CC10842 

4 □ Please send me 12 issues of Creaf/ve Computing tor $19.97 and bill 
me. (Full 1 year subscription price $24.97.) 



creative computing 

Please indicate which of the following mi- 
crocomputers you currently own and /or 
plan to buy in the next 12 months 





1 

Own 


2 Plan 
to Buy 


Apple 


A 


L 


Man 


B 


M 


Commodore /PET 


C 


N 


Digital Equipment / DEC 


D 


O 


Heath /Zenith 


E 


P 


IBM 


F 


O 


Radio Shack /Tandy TRS-80 


Q 


R 


Texas Instruments 


H 


S 


Timex Sinclair 


1 


T 


Other (specify) 


J 


U 


None 


K 


V 



3 For what, if any. business application(s) 
do you use the microcomputer you cur- 
rently own 7 



Void after December 31. 1984 
101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 
126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 
151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 
176 177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 
201 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 211 212 213 214 215 216 217 218 219 220 221 222 223 224 225 
226 227 228 229 230 231 232 233 234 235 236 237 238 239 240 241 242 243 244 245 246 247 248 249 250 
251 252 253 254 255 256 257 258 259 260 261 262 263 264 265 266 267 268 269 270 271 272 273 274 275 
276 277 278 279 280 281 282 283 284 285 286 287 288 289 290 291 292 293 294 295 296 297 298 299 300 
301 302 303 304 305 306 307 308 309 310 311 312 313 314 315 316 317 318 319 320 321 322 323 324 325 
326 327 328 329 330 331 332 333 334 335 336 337 338 339 340 341 342 343 344 345 346 347 348 349 350 
351 352 353 354 355 356 357 358 359 360 361 362 363 364 365 366 367 368 369 370 371 372 373 374 375 
376 377 378 379 380 381 382 383 384 385 386 387 388 389 390 391 392 393 394 395 396 397 398 399 400 
401 402 403 404 405 406 407 408 409 410 411 412 413 414 415 416 417 418 419 420 421 422 423 424 425 
426 427 428 429 430 431 432 433 434 435 436 437 438 439 440 441 442 443 444 445 446 447 448 449 450 
451 452 453 454 455 456 457 458 459 460 461 462 463 464 465 466 467 468 469 470 471 472 473 474 475 
476 477 478 479 480 481 482 483 484 485 486 487 488 489 490 491 492 493 494 495 496 497 498 499 500 
PLEASE PRINT CLEARLY-Use only one card per person 



NAME 



COMPANY 
ADDRESS 



PHONE * ( 
TITLE 



APT 



CITY 



STATE, 



.ZIP 



CC10841 



(Zip cod* must be included to insure delivery ) 

4 □ Please send me 12 Issues of Cromthm Computing for $19.97 and bill 
me. (FuN 1 year subscription price $24.97.) 



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